On Jan. 4, 2021, Nicole Carney, who serves as Student Support Services Coordinator at Coffee County High School, presented students with information on how to comply with TSSAA guidelines for COVID-19.
In order to follow TSSAA’s new rules to ensure the prevention of COVID-19, tickets will only be given to player’s parents, season pass holders, and TSSAA/TACA/CHS black pass owners.
As basketball is a highly attended sport at CCCHS, this was seen by many to be a big loss; with the growing number in COVID-19 cases, however, TSSAA had to make a change hastily.
Senior basketball player Jaxon Vaughn states, “our fans are the best, they bring emotion and intensity to the game.” He explains that nothing is better than playing in front of your friends and the momentum the student section brings can make or break a game.
Vaughn further explains how the loss of fans truly takes away from a home-court advantage. He states that he wishes students were able to still come to the game, “since they are with each other every day at school.”
Hayden Hullett was another senior player who stated that there is “no energy in the building without the fans.”
Hullett made an interesting point that if not all fans can come back to games, that seniors should still get a chance. He “wishes seniors were allowed more tickets” to let seniors attend their final home basketball games.
Lane Spry was the final interviewee. He serves as the student section leader; his general role is to advertise the game days prior. Along with that, various cheers and chants are used in order to give the team some hype and energy when they play well.
When asked what change he would make to the situation, Spry stated that he wished “we could socially distance across the bleachers in order to fit in as much of the fan base as possible
As far as the future of sports goes for students in this hard time, it all depends on the number of cases and how safe TSSAA feels if they are to lift the guidelines or continue with the protocol.