As COVID-19 continues to run its course, the world of sports continues to adapt and make the necessary changes to continue on during this time of uncertainty. The Florida A&M University men’s basketball team is still awaiting to play the remaining scheduled home games due to COVID-19 restrictions.
The culture of the university is synonymous with the student participation at sporting events. In the event that there were to be home more games this year, students would still not be authorized to enter Al Lawson Center to watch in-person as their beloved Rattlers play.
As an alternative, the athletic department has offered an option to pay a one-time subscription fee of $6.95 to watch games virtually for the entire year. Being that the university does not charge money for home games for any sport, this is a significant change.
Athletic Director Kortne Gosha said that the department is still moving in the right direction as they plan to have a successful year despite the many disparities.
“We have lost several game guarantees due to COVID so the impact has definitely changed how we operate,” Gosha said. “We are hopeful that the streaming service will give our fans an opportunity to invest in us as well as stay engaged. We are focused on finishing the year strong as we move toward the future of our department.”
Ultimately it is up to the students and fans to decide if they would indeed pay to watch games to compensate for not being allowed to watch games physically.
Freshman Zoe HIghtower believes that the price of the subscription is worth it.
“Honestly it is not bad and for me as a freshman being that in high school we had to pay for things like this anyway,” Hightower said. “Six dollars to support someone or a group of people is perfectly fine, I wouldn’t mind doing it at all.”
Freshman Jasean Coleman also said that the one-time fee to watch his peers play is something that he feels others should do.
“It is more than reasonable because if you do not have a way to physically be there then paying a subscription is not that bad especially compared to other services that we pay for,” said Coleman.
“I think that the option is extremely rational to substitute for what we can’t have.”
FAMU basketball does not return to the Al Lawson Center until Saturday, Feb. 20, against the North Carolina A&T State Aggies.