Whether you know me or not there is one thing everyone should know about me.
I always speak my mind. In fact, I have been referred to as brutally honest. Sometimes that can be a negative because there are always those that don’t want to hear the truth or the obvious.
Others actually appreciate the fact I’m open and honest and say what’s on my mind because they feel like I do about things.
With that being the premise here’s the meet on the bone.
There’s a virus out there you may have heard of by now. I tend to stay away from actually saying it’s name because there’s so much negativity and split opinions when it comes to things like social distancing, wearing masks, having our temperatures taken and the like.
We could have totally different opinions about what the protocol is regarding the airborne virus.
So what does all this have to do with sports?
All it takes is logging on to social media or turning on the sports channels that cover college and professional sports to understand just how many differing opinions there actually are floating around with regards to game attendance and safety procedures.
Opening weekend of high school football locally saw mixed results when it comes to social distancing, wearing masks and having no more than 10 in any particular grouping. There were plenty of photo’s on Facebook, twitter and snapchat to prove that people simply were not following the state and locally-mandated protocol.
I personally wore my mask the entire time I was inside the gates of Biggersville High School as I covered the Game Of The Week featuring Biggersville and TCPS. I may have had a strong inclination not to, or to not keep myself socially distanced. But for the sake of straying on the side of safety I did.
As I said before you have your opinion on how to handle the current situation as it is and I have mine. Some agree with me and some don’t.
And that’s okay. We each have freedom of choice.
When it comes to collegiate and professional football how many actually tuned in last Monday to watch the season opener between BYU and the Naval Academy in Annapolis? The score was lopsided and even secondary compared to the fact that there were zero fans in the stands.
None, notta, zilch, not one single person. I don’t know for certain but I presume Navy athletic officials decided to have it that way, at least for now.
The season opener in Hattiesburg between Southern Miss and South Alabama saw fans in the stands, albeit at around 25 percent capacity. And yes, there were groupings of more than 10 people in the stadium with many not wearing masks.
When it comes to Ole Miss, Mississippi State, Alabama, Tennessee, Clemson, Florida State and all other Power-5 schools that plan on playing this fall beginning in a couple of weeks, the consensus is that 25 percent capacity is just about right and will be the max for stadiums around the country, at least until the current situation improves.
The same can be said for high school football where 25 percent capacity is the plan right now. That’s mandated not only by the governor but also by each separate school district.
Thursday night’s NFL opener between Kansas City and Houston at Arrowhead Stadium saw near about that percentage. There might have even been some of those cardboard cutouts with fans faces on them to make it appear from a distance that the seat is occupied when it’s really not.
The Las Vegas Raiders will christen their sparkling new, 3.5 billion dollar facility called Allegiant Stadium next Monday, Sept. 21 when they host the New Orleans Saints in front of..nobody. Well, except the TV crews and certain other mandatory personnel, players and coaches.
So what’s the point to all of this? It’s very simple. No matter if you agree with me or anyone else about how things should be instead of how they are, including the sports world, sometimes we have to agree to disagree. I’ll wear a mask to the game. If you feel violated, or that you have the right to do what you want, then by all means go with it. You might not be able to get in but at least you’re standing up for what you believe is right.
One thing is for certain, and this is an old adage that’s older than my 99-year old grandfather: you can please some of the people some of the time but you’ll never please all the people all of the time.
Enjoy your week and I hope you’re able to get out and attend a game soon.