As we all sit and ponder what the next steps look like or when “normal” will return, I want to remind everyone that we must take it all step-by-step. The most important thing for us all is to stay the course and adjust as necessary. This is not easy for any one individual, but together we can ease the fears and pain of the unknown for all involved within the NJCAA.
This past week has arguably been the most challenging week in sports history. The current situation has affected every single level of the sports world. The thoughts of disappointment from every student-athlete and coach who do not get to experience that national tournament or even completing their season aches my heart and soul. There are no words to express the emotions that constantly come and go.
Arnold Palmer once said “Always make a total effort, even when the odds are against you." Before making the ultimate decision to cancel the remainder of the year, we gave it every chance we could to support everyone throughout the NJCAA, but ultimately, the safety and security of all involved led to the final decision.
I want to personally thank the entire NJCAA Board of Regents, led by Board Chair Mick McDaniel who personally answered the calls and texts at all hours of the day. I would also like to thank the Presidential Advisory Council, led Dr. Dan Kinney, Jr who did the exact same thing. These groups provided the leadership and support that is necessary for an organization like ours while upholding the decisions that protect us all.
As an organization, we will continue to update the membership on new and pertinent information as it comes forward. We do not know all of the answers right now, but in order to stay up to date, visit the NJCAA COVID-19 Homepage.
Again, it is my privilege to serve the membership and provide leadership through this unprecedented time. Thank you for what each of you do to make the NJCAA a great place to be.
Yours in sport and education,
Dr. Christopher Parker