Scrimmages, practices continue per NJCAA guidelines
Graphic by Andrea Valdez and Photo by Chris Swann
Due to the July 13 decision by the National Junior College Athletic Association, Tyler Junior College will be switching all close-contact fall sports to the spring, including football, men’s and women’s soccer, and court volleyball.
Even though these fall athletic programs are closed, it is similar to an off-season, where, per NJCAA guidelines, there are still practices and scrimmages. Kevin Vest, the athletic director of intercollegiate athletics at TJC, commented on plans for the upcoming months.
“All athletic programs will be active this fall. The NJCAA allows for a practice and competition season in all sports this fall,” Vest said. “Our baseball and softball teams have operated in this manner as spring sports for decades. Essentially, we have turned all of our sports into spring sports.”
According to Vest, all sporting practices will be following the federal, state and local COVID guidelines within the NJCAA approved practices and scrimmages, as well as following the new NJCAA calendar.
The student athletes, whose seasons are switched around, will not lose any athletic scholarships for the fall semester due to cancellations and season changes. “Institutions are required to honor scholarships for student-athletes on a NJCAA letter of intent. There are specific reasons an individual may be released from their letter of intent but the change in sport season is not one,” Vest said.
Though the fall athletics schedule has changed, athletes have gained extra time to prepare for competitions in the spring, all while navigating the new academic climate