The Ivy League this afternoon put all sports on hold until January 1, becoming the first Division I conference that will not play football because of the coronavirus pandemic.
There are a number of top former FCIAC athletes that now play a fall sport in the Ivy League. I spoke with six to get their reactions.
Tysen Comizio, University of Pennsylvania Football. The former Greenwich star is a sophomore running back.
“I just found out for sure like everyone else a couple of hours ago. It’s a mix of emotions. Definitely a ton of disappointment, just because it is how-many-ever years now, over 10-plus years playing football. Especially being a rising sophomore and hoping to see the field a lot. It’s definitely very disappointing. It sucks to have something that is such a big part of your life taken out of it. I’m hoping for the best, hoping they will give us at least a spring season. It would be different but better than nothing.”
Mike Neary, Brown Football. The former All-State lineman from Darien is a rising junior and played in seven games last season.
“We kind of knew it was the writing on the wall. Hopefully we get to play again in the spring. We’re going to need the numbers that keep coming out to improve drastically. The coaches said it was really the travel aspect of the season that made it impossible. It’s more pushing sports down a year with eligibility as opposed to really canceling.”
Jake Rizy, Harvard Football. Rizy, a lineman, just graduated from Staples and was set to begin his freshman season.
“I’m super excited just to get on campus, because they are going to allow us on campus, which is nice. But the tough thing is one of my teammates for next year said we wouldn’t be able to work out there. Use the facilities or do anything gym wise. I might then stay home and do all my classes online and have access to a gym. Doing a semester just studying and not being able to work out or use weights would be a huge disadvantage. Right now I’m going to wait a couple of days, my coaches will most likely reach out and see whether or not we go up to campus for the fall semester.
Emma Rothkopf, Brown Field Hockey. The Wilton record holder for most goals in a season played in all 17 games as a freshman, starting in 14.
“I definitely had been hearing about this but it is different now that it is official. It’s really upsetting. I don’t know the whole picture of what is going on or what this means for us, but I know me and my team are very upset about it. It’s affecting everyone so we need to take this and make it something positive somehow for ourselves and for the league.”
Lydia Shaw, Yale Women’s Soccer. The former leader at Staples, a rising senior, started all 16 games last year, finishing with three goals and five assists.
“Right now I really haven’t even processed the decision. It’s one of those things that we’ve been anticipating it for a while but it doesn’t really hit you until it becomes true. Seeing the situation unfold since March, we really felt for our peers and seniors and all across the NCAA, seeing the winter and spring seasons coming to a close. And now that it would also be affecting fall athletes. It’s devastating, it’s disappointing. College sports are just such a climax to careers and being a rising senior and having the shape of that change so drastically. It’s disappointing.”
Gianluca Trofa, Harvard Men’s Soccer. The standout goalkeeper for Norwalk, a rising sophomore, made his college debut a year ago against Columbia.
“It has been really frustrating everything has to get pushed back at least another few months. It is what it is because of the current situation. It makes sense what was put in place. At the same time being an athlete, it is very frustrating knowing all the work you put in during the offseason, you are not going to see until the spring. You do it for the love of the sport, not because of anything else.”