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FROM THE CHEAP SEATS – Sports and politics

It’s amazing to me how the Covid pandemic has affected people differently, in both sports and politics. I don’t mean the folks who test positive but rather the decision-making process of those in charge of the different sports leagues and conferences, particularly the NCAA.

The Big Ten and the Pac-12 conferences canceled their football seasons and I truly believe that they thought the three remaining Power 5 conferences would follow suit. However, the ACC, Big 12 and the SEC have all tweaked their schedules a bit but all three plan on playing football this fall.

Originally, the Pac-12 and Big Ten were going to play football in the spring, but now, after severe criticism, the Big Ten has been discussing the possibility of playing during the winter in domed stadiums. Of course, that would require athletes to stay on campus when the main student body will be home for most of it. Many other conferences canceled their seasons as well and are eyeing spring seasons. I just don’t know about the possibility of playing basically 2 seasons in 1 year. How many players will opt out as they forward to the NFL draft?

The NCAA did come out and grant an additional season to all college athletes who are missing their seasons this year. It appears as though the NCAA doesn’t have much input, if any, into Division I college football, the engine that drives the athletic departments’ budgets. Maybe that’s why they’re always trying to force their will on the basketball programs.

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The college conferences need to get together and create their own entity. They need to govern themselves and make decisions for the whole. This every conference for themselves nonsense isn’t good for anyone!

There are a lot of things I don’t agree with concerning professional sports, and kneeling during the National Anthem is one of them. I’ve always believed that there are better ways to protest and get your point across. I also believe that players have the right to kneel if they so desire. Our constitutional freedoms apply to everyone, whether or not we agree with them. They can’t make me kneel just as I can’t make them stand.

I also don’t agree with all of the violent protests that have been occurring and I believe that the majority of police officers are good, just like I think that the majority of protesters are good. I will ask this question though; what in the world can anyone do, regardless of skin color, that would require someone to shoot them 7 times in the back? It’s what sparked the Milwaukee Bucks to boycott their playoff game, which in turn led to the NBA postponing several games, which led to other leagues doing the same.

The great thing about America is the fact that we all have different opinions and we’re all able to express those opinions. Until we start respecting each other, there are going to be problems!

–Rob Mooney, Metro Voice sports writer