By Jair Ramirez
Riverside City College athletes have found ways to maintain contact through the pandemic’s campus closure with online workouts, social media and different apps.
“Through Canvas Online we put our workouts and then have them take videos of their workouts,” said Tom Craft, RCC football coach. “We want our players to video their workouts and then send them in to us on canvas because we’re trying to stay in touch with them. It’s really kind of a creative process.”
With many of the city’s parks and fields closed, it has been a challenge for players to practice on their own.
“They don’t have access to gyms so we got to try and do the running, push ups, sit ups, get two buckets with a broom handle,” Craft said.
“It’s been good. Our quarterbacks have been trying to go out and throw when they get access to a field — not at RCC obviously — and we had some of our receivers throw with our quarterback.”
The RCC women’s beach volleyball team is communicating via text messaging and Facetime to arrange training.
“We’re having them run three miles three times a week on Monday, Wednesday, Friday,” said Elizabeth Younglove, a beach volleyball associate.
The team switches up its workouts, focusing on agility Tuesdays and Thursdays, Younglove said.
Other RCC coaches explained how this has affected recruiting in both negative and positive ways. Although not meeting with future athletes and their families is tough, coaches say they have gotten athletes to commit, even ones they did not think they had a chance to sign.
“We have Zoom meetings with our returning players and Zoom meetings with our recruits,” Craft said. “When we have a Zoom meeting with four coaches; it’s like four coaches doing a home visit.
Baseball coach Rudy Arguelles explained how the recruiting process has been difficult.
“We’re a hands on group and we have a hands on approach when we have that opportunity,”Arguelles said.
“Either going out on visits, out on a recruiting trail or when recruits, parents and family come to visit the campus. There’s nothing like having that in person opportunity of communication.”
It is still unclear how the possibility of instruction being online in the fall will affect sports.
Sporting events could be delayed, canceled or continued as planned.
“I think we should first consider everybody’s safety and see where we are in this pandemic,” said Doug Finfrock, RCC Women’s Water Polo coach.
“We’ll have to wait and see what the California Community College Athletic Association decides. If we’re going to push back the season or open it up early, I think there’s a lot of scenarios out there,” said Craft.