Alcorn State got a rare non-conference FCS win for the SWAC on Saturday. It has another game on Saturday against South Alabama. It’s one that will pay it $300k.
But there was no practice on the Lorman, Mississippi campus on Monday night, head coach Fred McNair revealed on his weekly radio show. That’s because there is no athletic training staff. The school does not have a full-time staff and, according to McNair, the part-time staff has been hit with COVID-19.
McNair called the situation heartbreaking.
“We got a big game (at South Alabama) that’s going to make the university money, and we can’t go out and get treatment for the young men and women. We can’t get treatment or rehab on this day, not knowing what’s going to happen tomorrow,” he said. “This is something that needs to be fixed. This is an administration issue. I could talk about it all the way till I turn blue. This has got to be fixed.”
Sources say this isn’t the first time a lack of a training staff has halted the Alcorn State program. ASU was the only SWAC school to opt-out of the 2021 spring football season, and issues with the training staff were said to be part of the reason why.
“We’ve got to be able to pay somebody to be the Alcorn State athletic trainer, and we don’t have one,” McNair said. “That’s disheartening. I told the players the reason we weren’t going to practice this morning was because we didn’t have a certified trainer and you could hear the room. It was a bad feeling for me to have to tell the guys.”
Alcorn State Director of Athletics Derek Horne issued a statement that did not specifically state what the issue was.
“The Alcorn State University athletic teams have modified their practice schedules because of a COVID-19 related issue,” Horne said in the statement. “Throughout the pandemic, the health and safety of our student-athletes remain our top priority.”
Alcorn State is 1-1, winning on Saturday after dropping the MEAC/SWAC Challenge to NC Central in Week Zero.