Local college athletes react to extra year of eligibility

Published: Mar. 31, 2020 at 9:25 PM CDT
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Despite the 2020 spring season being canceled due to COVID-19, it won't be a total loss for NCAA athletes after a ruling to give those players another year of eligibility.

"I would love to have them back for another year. I love our senior class," Badgers center fielder and SPASH alum Ally Miklesh said.

For collegiate athletes, hope comes in the form of an extra year. Something that UW-Stevens Point senior Tommy Duddleston is thankful for.

"That would definitely be a positive thing to look at. Just allowing everyone another year to get better as a baseball player and stay on top of your grades," Duddleston explained.

But, not every senior will be able to use that year.

"All three of my roommates, they're all seniors and they won't be playing next year. So, that's definitely a real kick in the teeth," Duddleston added.

"At this point a lot of the seniors already had post graduate plans, grad school, or like work. So, I'm not sure where their heads are at right now this was a pretty new announcement to us," Miklesh said.

With the teams having more players on their team next season, the competition will be even higher.

"I would say athletes competing at the highest level possible, just because there's going to be five classes instead of four classes, so there's more people fighting for a spot," Duddleston explained.

The athletes might have missed out on the 2020 season, but they know more is at stake.

"I would just like to thank the doctors and nurses for putting their lives on the line. The essential workers for allowing our town to run so smoothly, our coaches and support staff again, you're amazing and keeping us active. And, moms and dads who are juggling their work from home and helping their kids learn, I really appreciate it," Miklesh said.