NewsPinellas County


High school athletes prepare for games in age of COVID-19

Teams work around invisible opponent
Posted at 7:30 AM, Aug 18, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-18 08:17:29-04

PINELLAS COUNTY, FL - The Florida High School Athletic Association has given the green light to move forward with fall sports and games in the Bay area.

Not all schools have opted to begin their sports programs with fear of the coronavirus, but athletes in Pinellas County are taking advantage of the recent decision.

Lakewood High School football players began to prepare for a possible season with weight training. Jalen Stubbs is one of them.

"Ever since COVID came around you know everything has been different for everybody," Stubbs said.

This is the running back's senior year. It was a year that was supposed to be filled with promise.

"I have been working my behind off for colleges to see me and my senior year was the year to do that and it kind of hurts that I am not even going to get that," Stubbs said.

Lakewood High School head football coach Cory Moore said some parents have pulled their kids from the sport this season as a result of COVID-19.

He said he understands their move.

In the meantime, he is working to keep his kids at a safe social distance all the while trying to get an idea of how this year will play out.

"As of right now the games they are trying to make sure that they add different types of ways to sanitize throughout the game. Social distancing throughout the game. So, this is all going to be new for us," Coach Moore said.

Before training and practices, each player will log into a system and will be asked a series of questions regarding COVID-19.

So far, no one has tested positive for the virus, but social distancing in a contact sport is a challenge in itself.

For Stubbs, he said his concerns are there, but he's choosing to direct his energy elsewhere.

"When we focus on one thing that's all we can focus on. We can't focus on things we can't control," Stubbs said.