And there it is:
UPDATE: In case you were wondering…
And there it is:
UPDATE: In case you were wondering…
No, they could not.
And to think some of y’all want to junk this series.
Well, I give Greg McGarity credit for something else today — at least he’s not signing contracts anymore without having them vetted by the lawyers first.
UGA and Bowling Green athletic officials last week signed off on a nonconference men’s basketball game to be played in Stegeman Coliseum in the second week of November.
It’s a standard move in the springtime to fill out holes in a schedule for the coming season.
What was different in the two page document — obtained by the Athens Banner-Herald from Bowling Green in an open records request — was the language that reflects planning for future sports events in the time of COVID-19.
It refers for the first time in a UGA contract to “epidemic, pandemic or public health emergency,” in a force majeure clause that would make it “impossible or impractical the playing of the Game or which prevents the participation of at least one of the Parties in the Game.”
You’ve come a long way from condom clauses, Greg. Good show.
So, how many of you identify with having sports withdrawal?
For the first 48 hours, back in March, Gary Politzer could barely move off his couch. A feeling he could not quite understand paralyzed him, even if he knew the reason behind it was frivolous: He couldn’t watch sports anymore.
Politzer describes himself as a “24/7 sports fanatic,” a single guy who plays in multiple fantasy baseball leagues and even more fantasy football leagues. When the Players Championship golf tournament was canceled because of the novel coronavirus pandemic, Politzer realized his life-shaping hobby would be erased. There would be no Las Vegas trip for March Madness, no Baltimore Orioles Opening Day to “suffer” through and no binge-watching the Masters at his Arlington, Va., home over his 40th birthday weekend.
“I don’t know if it was grief or what,” Politzer said. “I feel like withdrawal is not a bad way to characterize it.”
At least he’s fairly honest about his predicament.
Politzer, like other fans interviewed for this story, recognizes and supports why sports have stopped. He has not discussed his longing for sports with friends because he worries it will sound callous and stupid. A certain level of privilege is a prerequisite for feeling sports withdrawal. And yet it is undeniably there.
“Am I being a jerk because I want to see Opening Day baseball?” Politzer said. “I haven’t talked to people about not seeing Opening Day, fantasy baseball, Capitals games, Wizards games. But it feels like this big, empty sort of hole. We all have these holes in our lives now, one of which is missing sports.”
I’ve seen plenty of examples of folks who are less self-aware than he is. Where do you see yourself?
“Alabama has Southern Cal in the first game, whether that game comes off we don’t know. They have to go to LSU, but I think you’re right, LSU has missed too many pieces. I think you’ll have a really good season, they could win 10 or 11 games, I don’t think they’ll win the championship. And then they have Auburn and home, and we’ll probably have to face Georgia again Georgia is the nemesis.” [Emphasis added.]
Yeah, Georgia’s gonna be a tough opponent for you, Paul.
Sadly, yes. Conference expansion has been an expensive boondoggle for the most part, but at least it’s got this going for it:
“There’s no secret that football runs the show,” Izzo-Brown said. “We all know that, and we embrace it.”
Okay, you’re a bog standard college AD struggling with the logistics of a stadium opening this season. Which of these two problems causes you more sleepless nights?
Another option, one this Power 5 school is leaning toward, is dividing the games into different ticket packages. For instance, at a school like Alabama, that could mean creating one ticket package that features home games against Georgia, Texas A&M, and Kent State and another of Auburn, Mississippi State and Georgia State. You’d still risk upsetting fans who can’t go to every game, but it’d ensure far more fans can at least get into some games. And you could still let your top donors have first pick on the ticket package and seats they want.
“More palatable to give everyone a little taste,” the administrator said.
Another major logistical challenge is getting everyone in and out of the stadium. If you’ve ever attended a college football game, you’ve been stuck on a long line waiting to get through a metal detector and ticket-checkers to get into the stadium. Now add in temperature checks for everyone coming in, a popular suggestion, and imagine how many people could get bunched up together in one place. If you somehow succeed at getting everyone in a timely fashion without being on top of each other, you need to get those same thousands of people out of the stadium.
“You expect 15,000 college football fans to exit in an orderly fashion when their row number is called? I’m sorry, you’ve got a lot more faith in fans than I do, especially if some of them have been drinking,” said Zachary Binney, an epidemiologist at Emory University. “I don’t know how you reliably would keep people apart when they are entering and exiting a stadium.”
If you can safely figure out all those issues, the experts say, you then need to consider that six feet between fans might not actually be enough. The reason is that distance is based on an average of how people breathe and how far droplets typically travel when you cough or sneeze. But during a college football game, the average attendant isn’t breathing or talking at their normal interval the whole game — they are yelling. More yelling means particles could travel farther which means fans might actually have to be more like 10 or 12 feet away from each other, according to Gandhi, rather than the established six feet. That could cut down stadium capacity even below the 20 percent range.
Push comes to shove, I’d guess number two there. After all, seeing your biggest donors get the coronavirus from attending a game isn’t a particularly good business plan.
Jamie Newman’s offseason instructor isn’t sayin’. He’s just sayin’, you know?
“I’m going to combine two guys because it’s not fair to compare him like to a Cam Newton because he was probably one of the best college players ever,” Avery said. “But I would put him as a blend between Jalen Hurts and Cam Newton right. Great runner, really physical. He’s got to be able to do some things in the throw game. I think. Right now he’s a little bit more polished going into his senior season, then where Jalen was but he’s gonna be able to do a lot of different things on and put a lot of stress on defenses.”
Meanwhile, from Pete Fiutak’s Alabama-Georgia game preview comes this:
Assuming it’s Jamie Newman taking over the Georgia quarterbacking job, will he be ready to be the best offensive player on the field? That’s what he might have to be to pull this off.
I think I liked it better when people were just looking at him as a darkhorse Heisman candidate. I will say I don’t think he has to be the second coming of Cam for Georgia to have a successful season (although I won’t complain if he turns out to be all that and more).