Prep Takes Stand Against COVID-19 with New Sports Season Plan

Jeffrey Go and Jack Coleman

At the start of the 2019 school year the Seattle Prep campus was filled to the brim with students and faculty. Now, this school year, there is not one student on campus, and the school is completely devoid of life. It’s no surprise that Covid-19 has changed how Prep works, especially in the Athletics Department. Many sports have need to be altered or postponed to a later date.

However, all is not lost as many people are still fighting for a chance at a season of athletics. The new Athletic Director at Prep, Sam Reed, plays a crucial role in keeping sports active despite the quarantine guidelines. “My big focus has been focusing on what is possible, rather than what isn’t possible,” said Reed.

As many people already know, the WIAA sports schedule as changed this year due to the COVID-19 quarantine and the subsequent guidelines. Most sports that were supposed to start in the fall have been moved back to future seasons, with Crew being the only the sport fully operating now. However, for Crew, this season will only be used for training, and there will be no traveling for sports in the fall.

With most sports this season being canceled or delayed, it is safe to say that this is not the season many were looking forward to and are deeply disappointed. “My heart hurts for last year’s seniors who had their spring sports season—their last time wearing a Prep uniform—wiped out. And I know many of this year’s seniors are scared, nervous, angry, upset, and/or confused about what is or isn’t happening this fall,” said Reed.

Some lessons can be learned from the situation at hand, and for Reed, is beginning to get comfortable with the uncomfortable. “As a leader, I’m used to being at least somewhat in control – whether it’s setting schedules, reserving fields, hiring coaches, etc. For the last six months though, all that planning that I would normally do has been done 2, 3, or 4 times, only to change again.”

There are always worries when it comes to taking part in sports, such as football or soccer with large groups and usually very close quarters contact. Given the current situation, guidelines will need to be put in to keep players from spreading the virus, however there is always the question of whether these strict guidelines will be followed.

Reed stated, “Honestly, I feel as if our student-athletes will be so happy to be out there competing, that they’d be willing to follow just about any safety precautions imaginable just to be out there!” This is a strong message that if Seattle Prep athletes want to continue their season, they will need to follow extremely strict guidelines on how the practices are run. Both players and coaches will need to be creative in their training. Since these rules will require players to be socially distanced during practice the question is now how the coaches can make the practices as tough and strenuous as always were in the past.

Despite all the hardships, one of Reed’s priorities is to keep athletics at Prep an outlet for positivity and personal development. Seattle Prep has always been devoted to making the sports program as enjoyable as possible for. In the past, Prep athletics has continually grown and changed through diverse way and that has not stopped this year. The school is creating a new official Instagram for Seattle Prep athletics (@seaprepsports). This new Instagram account will be a fantastic way to display information about the program and will continue to keep positivity up in these uncertain times.

Lastly, Reed would like readers to know “Everyone who plays a sport, or plans on it, should be on the lookout for information from their Program Heads about a new period for workouts.  Beginning September 28 and running through Thanksgiving, coaches will be allowed to schedule workouts (staying with COVID-19 protocols) and opportunities for student-athletes to practice his/her sport(s). Each sport has some good stuff coming up, and we are all really excited to see many of you again (or for me, to meet you for the first time)!