Coaching from home

With student athletes stuck at home due to COVID-19, coaches find themselves with a changed lifestyle as well

Coaching+from+home

Courtesy of CWU Athletic Communications

Austin Lane, Sports Editor

Instead of getting up in the morning to go to his office on campus or to go run a team practice, CWU Track and Field head coach Kevin Adkisson gets up and goes on his computer.

“You’re used to just getting up and getting to work and getting things done and now I have to get into a different routine, I have to get up and check all my emails and work on projects through the afternoon,” Adkisson said. “More time in the afternoon to get my own exercise done, which is always a positive, but I wish I was out with a stopwatch watching our own people get around the track.”

 

Impact

Coaches at CWU are feeling the impact of COVID-19 on their daily lives just as much as the student athletes are. 

Softball head coach Alison Mitchell also had to change her routine and knows she is doing her part in what has become the new normal.

“I could be totally selfish and say that it stinks and we wish that things can be different, but what we’re doing right now and what we had to sacrifice, it’s for the greater good,” Mitchell said. “That’s the beautiful thing about sports is that we always know how to handle adversity and that’s all this is, it’s just a little more adversity.”

Before their season was cancelled, the CWU softball team had an overall record of 13-9 and were 4-2 in GNAC conference games.

When Mitchell began coaching for CWU earlier this year, she had to move away from friends and family to Ellensburg. Now, with people doing their best to stay at home, Mitchell will miss her niece’s first birthday. Also, Mitchell’s mom is a high-risk individual who is self-quarantining in Phoenix, Arizona.

“It’s been really tough to not see my family and be able to reach out and be in contact with them all the time but we’re all doing our part and that’s all you can do,” Mitchell said. “When we get the chance to be together again, with the team, with my family, with everyone, it’s just going to be that much more special I think.”

CWU Baseball head coach Desi Storey said he misses the outdoors and being with his team.

“I’m a pretty active person, that’s one of the reasons I probably got into coaching baseball. I like being outside and doing things and being on the go all the time,” Storey said. “It’s a serious adjustment… I don’t have that two and half to three hours outside with the guys everyday. I miss the guys.”

CWU Baseball was 6-12 overall on the season with a conference record of 3-5 when the remainder of the season was cancelled. However, the team had just gone 2-2 in a four game series against Western Oregon University, a team that went 26-11 in the GNAC last season and finished third in the GNAC Championships.

“I felt like, especially with this group, we were just starting to turn the corner,” Storey said. “We were starting to put things together and the guys were working pretty hard. To see the improvements that we made the last two weeks before we had to shut down, I’m kinda going ‘gosh, this team was on the verge of making a run’ and I really felt like we could make a serious run at the conference title with this group.”

The coaches are still trying to stay in contact with student athletes to keep them on track athletically. Adkisson knows he is a resource for all the student athletes on the track and field team at CWU and is doing what he can to continue being that resource for the time being.

“We’re trying to maintain that encouragement for them to be active and still be pursuing their athletic goals. That’s the hard part… a lot of people get discouraged when things like this happen,” Adkisson said. “We’re in this zone now where we can suggest things but nothing is required, there’s no repercussion on them if they decide they don’t wanna do things.”