A month ago, when March Madness got canceled, I thought that it couldn’t get any worse. I was wrong, and now this has turned into my worst nightmare.
I do want to make it clear that I completely understand that sports being cancelled is 100 percent the right thing to do. But it being the right thing does not make it any less disappointing. However, some leagues are in better positions than others, so let’s break down what the future holds for various leagues around the country.
First things first. Let’s talk about Major League Baseball.
Obviously, this is the time when we would all be getting into baseball.
Most fans around here would be arguing who is better the Cardinals or Cubs, and I would be sitting here with my White Sox stuff on and hoping we can stay over .500. But just because that isn’t happening now does not mean it is too far away.
The MLB released last week that it is working on possibly playing in Arizona without fans and isolating the players and workers. I am 100 percent behind the idea. Mostly because they are planning on testing everyone before this gets going.
The one thing I am worried about is how realistic it is. I know there will be backlash but, can they really get all 30 MLB teams into one or two states and get them to play games while keeping them clear of the virus? Maybe there being no sports for a month is making me think the worst, but I’m really skeptical that will work.
The National Football League is in a tricky situation because they have a lot of things it has to get done before they can play games.
First things first. They have to get the NFL draft out of the way. That is getting done next week with each team having to have all staff involved at separate places and working together virtually.
From a fan’s perspective I absolutely love it. I was talking to my parents about this, and I told them that I may watch every pick of this draft. My mom laughed, and I think she thought I was being sarcastic, but I’m not.
This draft is the first sports-related live event in more than a month, and you bet I’m going to be glued to my TV. But if you look at it from a team’s perspective, this is an absolute nightmare.
Every pick you make in the draft not only affects right now but your future.
And to think those picks have to be made while everyone is in different rooms and relying on WIFI not to cut out while they are investing in their future. No thanks. Despite how much of a disaster my Cowboys have been in the past, they have drafted pretty well the last 10 years. I am absolutely preparing for that to be thrown out the window, mostly because I don’t trust Jerry Jones to know how to use video chat and make a pick without his football people telling him it is a horrible idea.
Reminder, this is the same man who admitted he was going to take Johnny Manziel until his son talked him out of it.
NHL and NBA
The NBA and NBA are pretty much on the same schedule from here on out. They both canceled at the same times and have very close to the same amount of the games yet to play. They also play in a lot of the same stadiums. If I had to guess, I would say they do get to play the rest of the season to the point that they crown a champion.
I do think the rest of the regular season will be shortened, but I think they do get the playoffs played at the worst.
Whether or not fans are there to see it is a lot more up in the air. Either way I think it is safe to say the two leagues will be on similar schedules from here on out.
Now this is where I draw the line. I’m not sure if I can function if I wake up on a fall Saturday and there is no college football getting ready to kick off. That just is not an option I can get over.
College football is probably in the best position of any major sport in America right now. While they do have a lot of things off the field to get over before games can start, there are not as many as the NFL. It also helps they don’t have any games until the last week of August. As of right now I am not panicking that there won’t be a season.
IHSA spring sports
I think the chance of there being IHSA sports this school year is closer to none than anything else.
The IHSA said if the stay-at-home order is lifted by April 30, it will get a season in. The chances of it being lifted by then are slim to none, and that would probably mean the end for spring sports.
You can contact Ryan Birch at RBirch@RantoulPress.com or on twitter @RyanBirchRP