KANSAS CITY, Kan. — Dreams of a fall sports season have come to an end for athletes in the Kansas City Kansas Public School District.
“Just a lot of mixed emotions. Anger, sadness. It just hurt because I’m a senior and I don’t get to play my last year of football,” Washington High School Football Senior, Anderson Jones said.
The Kansas State High School Activities Association scheduled the season to begin August 17. But on Tuesday, the district’s school board voted to suspend fall sports over coronavirus concerns.
“I don’t understand at all. Because given the time that we’re living in now, these young people really don’t have a whole lot to hold on to, to give them hope and keep them motivated,” Anderson Jones’ mother, Erin Jones said.
COVID-19 hit Wyandotte County hard. According to the Kansas Department of Health and Environment’s numbers on Wednesday, there’s been 5,031 confirmed cases, 102 deaths and 1,431 recoveries.
Washington High School’s football coach, Camron Smith says to his knowledge, none of his players have tested positive for the virus.
“I actually had kids call me in tears crying me yesterday, asking me what’s next.
Smith said his players have been conditioning since January. Many have hopes of playing at the college level. But he says this situation is a huge blow to recruiting.
“I actually talked to a division II coach earlier today about how this will impact their procedures. He basically said they’ll have to utilize their junior film,” Smith said.
KCKPS athletes like Jones, are pleading for the district to change its decision.
“We’ve been out here following the guidelines and everything for the pandemic, to make sure that we could have a season. We’re doing all this and we find out, we’ve just got to take the ball and go home,” Anderson Jones said.