Talk to any spring high school coach late in the season, and it’s likely the term “senioritis” will come up.
It’s a decline in motivation and/or performance as the days grow longer and the sun shines brighter and warmer with graduation looming.
In our part of the world, it’s also when the sweet Shack shore lap calls.
It could also be labeled “summeritis.”
I’ve seen it many times.
Teams on an absolute roll start to flutter a little in late May and June, and often find themselves knocked out of the playoffs earlier than expected.
It’s no knock on these young student-athletes.
It’s only natural.
This year, with the pandemic-amended schedule, the phenomena could be even more pronounced.
For one, wrestling has never been a spring sport before, so being on the mat this time of year has to be extremely disorienting.
Wrestling season usually ends in February.
The same applies to girls tennis, which is usually a fall sport.
And even for track and field and baseball, this June will seem stranger than usual.
Track and field usually ends in mid-May, while baseball wraps up in the first few days of June.
The state championships for both of those sports will take place June 25-26. The same holds for wrestling and track and field.
Graduation took place this past Friday.
And so, we’re talking about three weeks without the normal schedule of school, followed by practice and games.
It could make for some interesting playoffs because ritual is religion in sports.
Coaches will have to adapt to work schedules for some student-athletes and lazy days for others.
We may be about to see “senioritis” and “summeritis” on a level like we’ve never seen before.
(Send comments or questions to email@example.com or follow him on Twitter @jjsmithccnt.)