CCSF Sports to Resume Practice


By Colton Webster


Sports teams at City College have resumed training virtually with the possibility of playing games later in the semester.

“On Friday, Jan. 15, the San Francisco Department of Public Health approved the college’s plan for in-person collegiate athletics, including practices and competitions,” Interim Chancellor Rajen Vurdien said in a memo.

Jimmy Collins, HC for the CCSF Rams, stands for a portrait on the 50-yard line of the George M. Rush Stadium amidst the global pandemic. San Francisco, California. November 19, 2020. (Emily Trinh/Etc. Magazine)

According to a release given to players, the rollout to playing a normal season consists of several phases starting at phase zero.

Phase zero consists of all athletes meeting remotely on Zoom to complete virtual workouts, providing education on COVID-19, and ensuring all students are tested. Phase one is outdoor conditioning in groups of 10 athletes and two coaches with high-risk students and staff able to return to in-person meetings with a doctor’s note. Then, phase two is contact practices with shared equipment, using testing to ensure that players are following guidelines. Lastly, phase three is the resumption of full practice and competition with no live audience.


Freshman Rams pitcher, Sean Mueller, said that his team has a “close to zero percent chance that we’re going to have a season and if we do, it’ll be from the end of April to the beginning of June.”

Mueller added, “The entire season would be a month and a half, but I don’t know how many games we’d try to fit in, how other schools, since they’re in different counties, how it would play. It’s honestly a mess, but we’ll get more information in two weeks.”

Phases take place in two-week intervals of play, meaning a competition would resume six weeks after the start of the semester. All of this is performed at the discretion of San Francisco County, with the possibility to “halt or regress” their progress in the phases at any time.

Men’s Athletic Director Harold Brown gave more information regarding City College’s plan for the semester.

Men’s athletic director Harold Brown sits inside Brad Duggan Court, City College Ocean Campus. San Francisco, CA. Aug. 19, 2020. Photo by Kevin Kelleher/Special to The Guardsman.

“There’s going to be a limited amount of competition, there’s still the CCCAA working out how many games [will be played]. It’s changed from the initial competition structure… that should hopefully come out in the next couple of weeks.”

The CCCAA will also determine if “they’re just going to be scrimmages instead of games,” Brown added.

“The spring semesters competition is going to be divided into two semesters, Spring One and Spring Two. Sports like basketball, football, soccer, they’re Spring One. The other ones go [to] Spring Two.” Brown said.

Since the pandemic began last year, teams went virtual with games and championships alike brought to a halt.

Women’s water polo and swim coach Phong Pham said he has noticed a drop off in new athletes since City College went online.

Student-athlete Melanie Beavan-Szabo (right) competes in a water polo match back in the Fall 2019 season. Beavan-Szabo plans to rejoin the team for the Spring 2021 season. Nov. 2, 2019. Photo by Eric Sun/Special to The Guardsman.

“We have been fortunate to retain most of our water polo players and swimmers from last year, but not being on campus has had an impact on bringing in new student-athletes … Due to the pandemic, and with CCSF being online during the past 10 months, we are also not able to connect with potential new players or swimmers on campus.  Without being able to host those, the same level of exposure has unfortunately been missing,” Pham said in an email.

Sophomore swim and water polo player Melanie Beavan-Szabo said as well as having to be tested before every practice, players must “visit a doctor, fill out a bunch of paperwork, and we really do have to commit to social distancing in our own personal lives.”

Women’s water polo and swimming coach Phong Pham poses for a Zoom portrait with a picture of the City College pool as his background image. The water polo team is facing difficulties in recruitment this season. Matches require seven players in the water, but Pham hopes to have at least ten to twelve members on his roster. San Francisco, CA. Jan. 22, 2021. Photo by Melvin Wong/The Guardsman.

As a substitute for not being able to swim at practice, “sometimes independently we’ll be going to the ocean or setting up an appointment to go swimming at a different pool if possible,” Beavan-Szabo added.

The Guardsman