/Health experts fear the start of Mississippi basketball season will spread COVID-19

Health experts fear the start of Mississippi basketball season will spread COVID-19

Ole Miss has announced that its men’s basketball team will be taking a two week break from basketball activities because of COVID-19. Last week, Dr. Paul Byers, State Epidemiologist, and Thomas Dobbs, State Health Officer, expressed concern that basketball could spread the virus because it is indoors. Byers stated that basketball is particularly concerning. “We have witnessed outbreaks and clusters in basketball settings, and we are concerned about that.” READ MORE. COVID-19: As the holidays approach, hospitalizations and COVID-19 cases near record levels. Dobbs refused to answer questions about the potential dangers of basketball. He said that it could be dangerous to play indoor basketball in areas with low airflow. Dobbs stated, “I’m going say one thing.” “The CDC (Center for Disease Control), recently announced a hockey epidemic. It was given by one person to 22 people at a game of hockey… that’s quite appalling, right?! … Basketball is more intimate than ice hockey. Basketball is going to be much more dangerous.” Mississippi’s high school and college basketball teams face increasing problems as the 2020-21 basketball season starts on a hit-and miss basis. Ole Miss announced Monday that it will suspend men’s basketball until December 7 due to a rash COVID-19 infection. This means that the Rebels will have to cancel the four first games of their schedule. The Dec. 5 home match with Memphis has also been cancelled. Ole Miss reported last week that Kermit Davis Jr. had been positive for COVID-19. Davis stated that he had only mild symptoms. Davis sent a text message Monday morning saying that he was feeling fine and then suddenly felt something. Southern Miss announced on Monday morning that the first two of its games in the MKE Classic at Milwaukee had been cancelled due to COVID-19 issues with other teams. USM was to face North Dakota State on Saturday, and Milwaukee on Sunday. The Golden Eagles won’t open their season until December 2nd, as it stands now. They will play William Carey, a cross-town rival. Jay Ladner, USM coach, said via text that they are looking for more games. His team has not experienced any COVID-19 problems, he said. Mississippi State’s men’s season will open Wednesday against Clemson at the Space Coast Challenge in Melbourne, Fla. State will also play Liberty or Purdue Thursday in the Florida event. The Mississippi State home opener is set for Monday against Texas State. Southern Miss, State, and Ole Miss have all announced plans to limit basketball attendance at home to 25% of the arena capacity. Mississippi junior college basketball teams delayed the start of basketball season to the third week in January. High school teams from the state differ on how they approach basketball season. Jackson Public Schools has canceled its fall football season and plans to play basketball. However, JPS athletic director Daryl Jones stated that they will not play until Dec. 19. Jones stated that “It’s going be tough, but it’s possible to play,” Jones added. The season at perennial powerhouse Gulfport has started with mixed results. Three games have been postponed or cancelled by the Admirals so far. Gulfport was scheduled to host its annual Thanksgiving tournament today, and Tuesday. However, the event was canceled by multiple COVID-19-infected teams. Despite multiple complications with the virus, Gulfport managed to play four games. It has a record of 2-2. Coach Owen Miller stated that four of the starters have been quarantined due to COVID. They don’t have the disease, but have been exposed. Two of our children have tested positive for it and have only had mild symptoms. Greenville High School is the only Mississippi school to have cancelled its basketball season according to the Mississippi High Schools Activities Association._x000D