Fall sport athletes focus on conditioning as fall sports shift to spring


Courtesy Photo

Men’s Basketball Coach Jonathan James diagrams a play for his team during a timeout in Jan. 2018. Because of COVID-19, fall sports have officially been pushed back to the spring season.

With the fall semester upon us, and news that all sports are getting pushed back to the spring season, fall sports at Cosumnes River College have their eye on playing in the spring.

Fall sports will have to push their usual routine a few months back. For CRC, sports such as basketball, soccer and women’s volleyball will all begin in the early spring season.

“It’s kind of a ball to the head, it’s been a struggle,” said Women’s Soccer Coach Cesar Plasencia. “As a coach, you are also going through this on a personal level. You have to find your own motivation to be able to motivate others.”

For all fall sports, their entire schedule has been flip-flopped with off-season conditioning happening during the fall season, and return to play happening during the spring season. 

Plasencia said the only real benefit to this situation is that there is “something that we are able to do.” Throughout the off-season conditioning, Plasencia said he will have Zoom meetings, specific workouts and soccer games for his players to watch and analyze until they can get back to practicing on the field.

“We want to be in a good space mentally and a good space physically when we are able to get back on the field,” said Plasencia.

Men’s Basketball Coach Jonathan James said his team has weekly Zoom meetings, workout videos and game film to keep his players busy during this unique time.

“I really think this whole COVID situation has been a blessing in disguise, because you get to identify the players that are true college athletes, the ones that want the scholarships, and put the same amount of effort and work in,” said James. “You either want it or you don’t. This COVID situation has helped me discover those athletes that truly want it.” 

James said it’s a lot more challenging for the incoming freshman to stay dedicated and engaged. For his returning players, James said it’s easier because they are already familiar with the work and dedication that it takes.

“I think Coach James has done a great job at keeping us motivated,” said sophomore guard Alex Huber.  “Without Coach James and the other coaches giving us things to do, we definitely would have lacked some motivation.”

Huber said he also goes to a conditioning workout three days a week, as well as three individual training sessions a week. 

“In my individual training sessions, Coach James will be there sometimes,” said Huber. “There are a couple of freshmen coming into CRC this year, and Coach James will go visit them during their workouts, some living an hour and 40 minutes away.”

 Women’s Basketball Coach Coral Sage also said she has utilized Zoom as much as possible during the pandemic. 

“We have also done some team meetings and team get-togethers via Zoom just to keep the team morale up,” said Sage. “We do the workouts live via Zoom. It feels like the closest way to be with them as we can be.”

Sage said one of the main positives for her team is that she has never had this much time to go over the fundamentals, and she expects to see a huge improvement in the fundamentals for the upcoming season.

“I think the biggest thing for us is to not take anything for granted,” said Sage. “I think this is really like that wake-up call, to not take this time for granted, take everything you can from this experience.”