Opinion: Coronavirus Impacts Sports World

Indranshu Das | Staff Writer

Wash your hands.

Recently, the NBA sent a message to the players encouraging them to fist bump fans instead of high-fives and autographs. Fourteen deaths reported from the coronavirus in the US have occurred in one state–Washington. CJ McCollum, point guard for the Portland Trail Blazers, tweeted how he is taking a break from giving out autographs in response to the virus outbreak.

For those who don’t know what exactly the coronavirus is, it can be traced back to the marketplace in China, where merchants sold dead/live animals and hygiene protocol was overlooked. Despite cases being reported all around the world, we haven’t had to halt any events due to the coronavirus in the city of Mason. Like many other cities, certain precautions are being practiced throughout.

In Italy, the outbreak is so severe that many soccer games have been pushed back to future months and even the Italian Soccer League Commissioner Giuseppe Marotta said that the season could not even be completed. A lot of games prior to the postponing of the matches were played behind closed doors–meaning that no fans could come to watch and the teams would just play. The Euro Cup, a competition played between the top 24 teams in the continent, for now, is still on as scheduled, but it could be altered if the virus persists, as games are played in multiple locations, with a couple in Rome as well.

Personally, I view this situation as something that can’t be overlooked, but at the same time not too dramatic to the point where the media is treating it like its a lethal virus. The way to keep yourself safe is pretty simple–basic hygiene practices.

I respect what players like CJ are doing and essentially taking initiative by telling the community to be careful in what they do. In England, Newcastle Soccer Club has banned handshakes on the training ground and is enforcing a fist-bump only policy due to the virus.

The worldwide death toll topped 3,000 on Monday, and the number of those infected rose to about 89,000 in 70 countries on every continent but Antarctica. Physicians, Doctors, and even social workers are coming together to combat this disease. It is time for people to take matters into their own hands and be germ-free.