Unlike most schools with high performing athletics, Ohio Northern University does not offer athletic scholarships for incoming students. Those that choose to come to ONU are often driven by a love of the sport and a determination to better their education in the best place for them. The amount of time it takes to prepare for even a single game is truly astronomical, but COVID-19 has taken that time from them.
After athletics were shut down in March 2020, no one anticipated that so many student athletes would be effectively benched for more than nine months. Through many meetings, the Ohio Athletic Conference members have banded together to create a comprehensive plan that follows the advice of the CDC, NCAA, and other medical organizations to allow students to train and compete safely. The athletic directors and senior administrators meet digitally every week to rehash the plan and hammer out any potential flaws. However, it is going to take a lot of staff power and student patience to make this work.
The Director of Sports Information, Tim Glon, is ecstatic about student athletes getting back in the game. His job is to promote these students, games and everything ONU Sports stand for, and over the course of 27 years, he has been very dedicated to it. So, these past months without training or games have left him almost at a loss. “I thoroughly enjoy watching the polar bears play ball… It was really disappointing that we haven’t played a game. We went from March 12 to January 22 without playing a ball game… I feel for these kids. I see how much they enjoy it…”
Without something direct to promote, Glon’s office has been putting out Klondike’s Did You Know? to talk about ONU’s history in intercollegiate athletics. While the taste of sports history is alway interesting, it is unfortunate that it came from a time of hardship. This is one of the many small ways that COVID-19 has interrupted life on campus, but now that student athletics can begin again, ONU Sports can, hopefully, get back to normal.