The Killing of Dreams

Calvin Holliday, Contributing writer


COVID-19 has messed up everything for everyone. From jobs, families, and just the way we live, COVID’s impact can be felt in almost every aspect of everyday life. However, one of the biggest impacts of COVID is that it has sadly ruined kids’ dreams.

To be more accurate, it has ruined kids’ dreams to play college sports.

Being a high school athlete, you always deep down have a dream to go pro, or just even play at a college level and that dream can become reality for everyone who puts their mind to it. It could be a long shot, but a shot that anyone can make. However, because of COVID, many athletes’ dreams to play past high school died out as fast as the virus started.

As a result of the virus, events that would take places during the offseason of most sports were shut down. These events, known as showcases, are for athletes in high school, middle school, and even in some cases elementary school, to show your skill at a competitive level and show why college coaches should have you on their team.

Trying to play college sports myself, I understand firsthand how missing out on crucial showcases can worry you and make you feel stressed and scared. I’ve felt all of these things because many of the events that I was going to be playing in got shut down.

I was always told that my junior year of high school is your most important year to get looked at by colleges, and with that being said, I never had a junior lacrosse season. This made me really worried and stressed out because at that point, I thought it was all over for me. I thought my dream was just going to be a dream.

This past summer I did do some events, just not as many as I wished and hoped for. A couple of the ones I went to were the Bulldog Bash in Plymouth, N.H. and the Maryland lacrosse showcase. I was lucky to be able to play at some of these events this past summer because often, events can get expensive. Yes, the more local showcases and events are a little cheaper to play in, but most people look out of state to participate in an event, which can get very expensive.

In addition to not wanting to pay extra money for out-of -state events, many people’s main focus was to stay safe during the pandemic, so sadly, many kids never had the opportunity to participate in any events. Another reason why this pandemic hit high school athletes hard is because here in Connecticut they canceled the football season, being friends with people on the team I know that some of the members were waiting for this season to get film on them self and show how they play and send that out to college coaches to see if that coach wanted them or not.

I know some people that aren’t looking into playing college sports anymore because they wanted to stay safe. For others, they could not pursue the next level of play because they did  not want to pay so much money for these sporting events that enable collegiate play.  Knowing how this pandemic has played out, nothing is going to be the same after it’s over. Covid has ruined so many people’s lives in so many awful ways, and clearly the world will never be the same.

With time running out very fast more and more student athletes are giving up on an amazing dream, but it’s not their fault they are giving up – it’s all because of the COVID virus.

The year 2020 will be written down in the history books as one of the worst years in our lifetime. People will remember the Black Lives Matter protests following the release of video footage of the death of George Floyd, the coronavirus pandemic which has affected everyone in the world; people will also remember the Australian bushfire, and the tragic death of Lakers basketball star Kobe Bryant along with his 13-year-old daughter and seven other people on his helicopter when it crashed. This year and the next will have some of the biggest impacts on our lives. These events all make it a year to remember.

I’m going to remember this year by the amount that we all lost, because everyone has lost something this year. Everyone has lost so much due to COVID: people lost loved ones, jobs, their social lives, even friends. And kids and teens lost a dream – a dream that could never come back – the dream to play college sports. I lost a lot this year, not as much as others, but enough to make a impact on my life. I almost lost my shot to play in college, but I didn’t, which means the world to me. I’m still losing a lot every day because of COVID, but I’ll keep pushing through the challenges that are going to be placed in front of me. I’m going to remember the dreams that will be lost this year because I know that COVID doesn’t just kill and make people sick, it kills and disrupts dreams.


Contributing writer Calvin Holliday has played lacrosse for about 13 years, including for the Mills team. He will play next year for the University of St. Joseph in West Hartford.