NCAA D-I Council Approves Voluntary Activities For Football & Basketball

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The NCAA D-I Council voted to end the current moratorium for sports through May 31st. (PHOTO COURTESY: VisualHunt.com)

By Matt Noonan 

Today was a good day for NCAA Division I basketball and football players.

The NCAA D-I Council voted to end the current moratorium this afternoon on all athletic activities through May 31 and allow student-athletes to return to their respective campus for summer workouts from June 1 to June 30.

The news of today’s announcement was confirmed and reported by Yahoo‘s Pete Thamel, as well as Sports Illustrated.

Student-athletes that compete in other sports, such as soccer or field hockey, could learn as soon as next week if they would be allowed to return to campus to start their training for hopefully a fall season.

While it is not expected that every student-athlete will bolt back to campus to begin their respective training, it is likely that schools will welcome back athletes that may be living on campus or nearby. Perhaps more athletes will follow – in fact, Thamel reported that some colleges could see up to 25 or 30 student-athletes on campus next month, but of course, social distancing will be enforced in weight rooms and other facilities

Today’s ruling could be the sign of more good news to come as the 2020 college football season is currently slated to commence at the end of August.

These upcoming workouts won’t be the same as they have been in the past, according to Sports Illusrtrated, which reported in its story that student-athletes would normally spend eight hours a week training, including six hours with their school’s training staff.

Should We Blame President Obama for Rajon Rondo’s Shooting Woes?

Did President Obama really insult Rajon Rondo's shooting ability?

By Matt Noonan 

As American citizens, it’s quite easy to point fingers at the President of the United States, especially if it’s Barack Obama, however, some sports fans might want to reconsider why we’re blaming the commander and chief, who apparently “destroyed” Rajon Rondo’s shooting ability this past spring.

It’s not totally certain that Obama is the reason for Rondo’s poor shooting statistics with the Boston Celtics in March or April, but it’s quite possible that America’s leader stated something that affected the point guard, right?

Yet, how could one’s words derail an athlete? Seriously, how?

Well, according to multiple reports on Wednesday morning, as well as a portion of Shaquille O’Neal’s memoir with ESPNBoston.com columnist Jackie MacMullan, which is scheduled to debut on November 15, the Big Shamrock regaled the tale of the Green and White’s encounter with President Obama at Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts this past March.

Slam Online’s Tzvi Twersky reported the story, as well as discovered the following excerpt from the book:

In early March some of the guys went to the museum of Fine Arts for a fund-raiser and got to hang with President Barack Obama. Everyone was a little bit in awe. The President turns to Ray, points at Rondo, and says, “Hey, Ray, why don’t you teach this kid how to shoot?” Everyone starts laughing.

KG told me he saw the look on Rondo’s face and the kid was devastated, embarrassed. Dissed by the President, even though I’m sure Obama didn’t mean any harm. Rondo smiled and went along with all of it, but KG told me he could see it in his eyes. It bothered Rondo. It killed him

The next day Rondo shot the ball horribly. He stopped taking shots after that. He’s so sensitive. I think it was a real jolt to hear the outside perception of a basketball fan who happens to be the President of the United States. It messed with his mind. I’m sure of it.

So, with this being the case, one might have to wonder, should we indeed blame Obama for Rondo’s shooting woes? Again, how can one person impact a player’s shooting ability? Obama is indeed a true basketball supporter, however, it just seems rather bizarre that we’re all pointing the finger at him.

* Information for this specific post was also gathered from Kelly Dwyer‘s report on  Yahoo! Sports