Canceled season hinders athletes’ chances to play in college


Photo by Total Image Photographics

Seniors Grace Wamser and Meghan Leahy play in a game last season. Their season this year is still undecided.

The winter basketball season being postponed could potentially be harmful for athletes trying to be recruited by colleges for athletic scholarships. The lack of games athletes are able to play could make it harder for them to get noticed by different colleges, especially for seniors. 

“I would definitely say that this is an issue for seniors on my team who are trying to play basketball in college,” said junior Danielle Broege. 

Some basketball players are not having as much of a problem with the basketball season being postponed because they are trying to get recruited from their AAU teams. 

“To be honest, most of the recruitment process for women’s basketball goes through the AAU season during the spring and summer.  Obviously, high school basketball stats help to show coaches, but most coaches pay attention to higher level AAU teams. This year, I have joined one of the top teams in the midwest, The Wolverinas, and so far that has been very beneficial for recruiting purposes,” said sophomore Peyton Gerdes. 

The days and weeks leading up the postponement of the basketball season were non-contact days, which involved shooting and dribbling.

“Our days are usually non-contact, so we can’t really do anything as a team during COVID-19; it’s mostly just working on the basics,” Broege said. 

The spike in COVID cases in Illinois has led to the cancellation of these training sessions which gives athletes more time to train and work on their performance alone. 

“This year has obviously been full of the craziest and unexpected events, but it hasn’t stopped me from practicing and getting better at basketball. During this off-season, I have been working out daily and going to my personal speed and strength trainer to stay ready for the possibility of some type of season this year,” Gerdes said. 

The girls basketball team still sees the recruitment process as a challenge with postponement of the season, especially with some of the upperclassmen who are trying to get recognized by different colleges. 

“It’s definitely tough, especially last spring missing pretty much a whole AAU season set everyone back a little bit, especially juniors who were trying to get a scholarship during their last year of basketball,” Gerdes said. 

Different coaches are still trying to get their players seen by colleges during the pandemic without breaking guidelines.

“My AAU coach has set up a website for our team where we can post-game highlights and social media for college coaches to look at and hopefully find interest in me as a player,” Gerdes said. 

Right now, people do not know what is going to happen to senior athletes who want to play in college. 

“I don’t know if there are any ways seniors could get into contact with colleges to see if they could see them play because as for right now we’re not in the gym,” Broege said.  

During this time, it is important to talk and get through this with teammates, to let them know you are there to support them and to help each other get better.

“I have kept in touch with players from the high school team, and everyone is in the same boat. Obviously they have to work out on their own, and everyone was really sad about the season being postponed,” Gerdes said.