First, we are called to continue to put our trust in God and in each other and our families and the Rockhurst community. Our faith must be strong to handle the emotional frustrations that will inevitably ensue. We can hopefully believe that there can be some good that comes out of this and recognize that we are not in control of these results but that we can always control how we respond to these challenges. It does not escape me that this announcement happens during our blessed Triduum.
Secondly, with yesterday’s announcement, I don’t believe we abandon you, our student-athletes, for these are difficult times for many and in so many ways. We should be supportive of one another in our own frustrations and sadnesses, especially those of our seniors. We encourage you to connect with teammates, always reminding you to make smart and healthy decisions in how to cope with those frustrations. A challenge, but important practical reminder that this is all being done to protect you and those that you love from a deadly virus, and therefore this is not the time to suddenly disregard social distancing and local, state and CDC guidelines.
Thursday, 4/9/20, our senior lacrosse players were saluted on the Rockhurst Sports Minute on 610 AM radio, and we will be doing that for the other spring sports. Thanks to Mr. Mark Miller for this opportunity to publicly recognize them. We will need to find other ways to say thank you to our seniors. I echo Father Giacabazi, SJ, our principal, in his recent homily at last Friday’s all school Mass, in that we ache for you now and want you to know you are loved!
As the rawness of this reality fades, our plan is still to create spaces of community building for those student-athletes who want it. We can still give direction so that your time doesn’t go idle. There is a value in sports that goes beyond a competitive season or winning a championship. It includes, but is not limited to, good physical well-being, seeing progress in one's skills, building team community and overcoming setbacks. Now, more than ever, as our student-athletes, you will be challenged to look more long-term in regard to your goals and will be required to practice grit, which is a daily grind for a more distant hope.
There will inevitably be more questions which will need to be answered. I will be working with our coaches and our administration in these regards. While before, we were holding out a glimmer of hope to see you all in Rockhurst gear competing for each other and the Hawklets this spring, we must now dismantle that hope and find a renewed hope to work with the “what’s next” questions and how we can be supportive of you all and also our coaches who were so much wanting to coach you in the best traditions of Rockhurst’s athletic program.
As I shared with our head coaches, I believe that #GoHawklets is not just a cheer from the stands or our students, but rather it is a mantra. We are challenged now, more than ever, to be together as “Hawklets” and to focus on how we “go” instead of giving up.
My prayers to you and your family during this blessed Triduum. God Bless!
God Bless! Go Hawklets!
Coach Mike Dierks ‘91
Baseball - Head Coach Jim DeGraw (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Golf - Head Coach Mark Nusbaum (email@example.com)
Lacrosse - Head Coach Tim Reidy (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Tennis - Head Coach Mark Mills (email@example.com)
Track & Field - Head Coach Troy Harding (firstname.lastname@example.org)