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Local college football coaches are preparing for a football-free fall


HAMPTON ROADS, Va. – There are no college football teams taking the field at Hampton Roads this Labor Day Weekend.

“I would have just been excited to see how hard they would have played and the emotion they would have had for each other,” said ODU head coach Ricky Rahne.

“The air has kind of been taken out of the whole balloon,” said Latrell Scott, Norfolk head coach. “Usually you hear the band rehearsing, you do all that stuff this time around, and you don’t have that on the university campus, so it’s difficult.”

“This will be my first year in 30 years without a season, so I’m a little withdrawn,” said Hampton head coach Robert Prunty.

Hampton, Norfolk State and Old Dominion head coaches are thinking about a fall without football. All three schools were scheduled to open their seasons this weekend, alongside William & Mary, before the pandemic led to sports cancellations in the fall.

Friday was to be a big day for Rahne, who was originally scheduled to make his debut as the boss of the Monarchs in a match against Wake Forest.

“Once we made the decision not to play games, I’m not going to say I moved on, but I tried to move on,” said Rahne. ‘I haven’t really thought about it, and honestly, this thing was never going to be about me or our staff. It’s just another chance for our children. ‘

Meanwhile, the Spartans should host their Labor Day Classic Saturday in a game against Virginia State.

“The Labor Day Classic is a big game for our area,” said Scott. “Two rival football teams and it would kick off our season. It’s the most talented team we’ve had since I’ve been here and I was really looking forward to getting these guys on the field together.”

As for Hampton, they would face Virginia Union on Saturday night. While the Pirates cannot be on the field together at the moment, they are still finding ways to come together as a team.

“What I learn about these young men is that they care about people and what is happening in this country,” said Prunty. “We just had the entire football team vote to vote and they were so excited to do it.”

Our local teams all hope to play their football seasons during the spring semester.

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