RVC wants to give student-athletes 'opportunity to play'
August 1 is the first day that Rock Valley College and other juco fall teams are allowed to begin practice, however, the Golden Eagles are not locked in just yet on making their return.
The school is working on its own plan, which, just like the pandemic, is changing every day.
"Usually in athletics you play to win," said RVC Athletic Director Darin Monroe. "In 2020 and 2021, you're win is playing."
RVC believes that win is very attainable. Monroe says it's not as easy as just heading to the diamond for a game, but it can be done.
"This is so fluid that you just evaluate the situation as we go and just make a day-to-day best decision on what's in the interest of you," Monroe said.
Just like the NJCAA's return-to-play plan, player safety will be a major part of the Golden Eagles blueprint.
Temperature checks will be made, social distancing will be encouraged, and RVC's schedule will likely be limited to regional opponents.
Monroe says that will give them a better shot to finish the season.
"I don't want to start the season if we're not going to have the intent of finishing either," said Monroe. "We really have to evaluate that part of it because it's terrible to have to look your team in the eye after 20 games and say that their season is over."
According to the AD, players are itching to get back with teammates and while Monroe understands if some are more hesitant to return, RVC will provide a safe environment if sports make a comeback at the campus this fall.
"We're not going to force anybody to step on the field if they're not comfortable in doing so," Monroe said. "But for those kids that are, we're hopeful that we're going to be able to press forward and give them that opportunity."
Monroe says RVC is working with the Winnebago County Health Department and following the CDC guidelines in order to make their decision, which is expected to be made sometime this week.