ASHLAND, Va. (WWBT) - On Tuesday, the Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) decided to postpone all athletic activities through the remainder of 2020. Wednesday saw players and coaches adjust to that call.
Randolph-Macon sponsors 18 varsity sports, 12 of which will be impacted by the postponement. Jess Weiss’s field hockey team is one of them.
“All of the hard work that [the seniors] have put in over the last three and a half years definitely jumps in my brain first,” said Weiss. “After that, the players are obviously thinking ‘can we still come back?' They want to be with each other, they want to be practicing, they want to be around the school.”
The head coach also says wondering if the season will work in the spring also pops into her mind, but she’s always preached to her players to control what they can control, and now she’ll do the same.
“This is a time for me to walk the walk of all the things I’ve been talking about since they’ve gotten here.”
Weiss said that right now, she’s not worried that any athletic programs will be eliminated because of the decision. She credits the Yellow Jackets’ administration with being transparent throughout an unprecedented time. The fifth-year head coach also pointed out that 30 percent of the school’s population is made up of student-athletes who chose Randolph-Macon for a handful of reasons.
“They chose this institution, they chose Division III, not just for the sport, but for the community, for their sororities, for their clubs, for their faith groups, all of these different things, their academic community,” Weiss pointed out. “To be removed from that is really missing a lot from... again, community is everything, relationships are everything.”
In the meantime, student-athletes are scheduled to return to campus next month, and the field hockey team will make the most of what they have. Teams will be permitted to workout in the fall, and Weiss says they’re just waiting on the NCAA to determine how often they can practice.
“I’m really looking forward to August 18 when our players move back in and when we have some life back here on campus.”
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