Tim Folliard – Sports Editor
As the leaves are changing on campus, restrictions on athletic teams are changing as well. Teams on campus are now able to practice in groups of up to 50. For the first two weeks of training, teams were only allowed to have groups of 10.
The COVID-19 protocols have not changed. Before student-athletes practice or workout, they must fill out a health screen reporting any symptoms. Their temperature is taken as well. If they are having symptoms or have too high of a temperature, they not allowed to participate.
During practices and workouts, athletes are required to wear face coverings at all times with the exception of drinking water. This is an obvious change that the athletes have had to make.
“Playing in a mask is quite different. It makes certain things like communicating at a distance quite hard.” Baseball player Robbie Dudzinski said. “But it is a good reminder of the times we are in. While things are different, we can still compete and adapt as we do in sports at all times. We need to be safe and take this seriously.”
Most teams have started to have full team practices or are planning to move to full team practices this week. Baseball, Men’s and Women’s Volleyball, Men’s and Women’s Lacrosse and Men’s Soccer have already started full team practices. Men’s Basketball, Softball, Women’s Basketball, Women’s Soccer will move to full team practices within the next few days.
The Football team will not have a full team practice until DuPage County allows for groups of more than 50 people to assemble. Until then, they are currently practicing in three groups.
Assistant Athletic Director Nate VanRaden has overseen the COVID-19 procedures for these teams. He believes student-athletes are doing a great job.
“Athletes are doing an incredible job of wearing masks.” VanRaden said. I am very proud of them as it cannot be easy to adjust to.”
Currently, the first Benedictine athletic competition is scheduled for January 16th. Men’s and Women’s Basketball are set to face off with Dominican University at home.