Fans Back in the Stands

Greg Miller, staff writer

With the increase in vaccine availability and the drop in COVID-19 cases, Augsburg has announced that for the remainder of the year, spectators will be allowed in limited amounts at all outdoor athletic competitions. 

This announcement is somewhat of a surprise since the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (MIAC) was one of the most strict when it came to permitting fans at competitions during the fall and winter sports seasons. For soccer, lacrosse, softball and football there will be a limit of 475 spectators at Edor Nelson Field here on campus. The baseball team will have a limit of 375 spectators when they play at their home field, Parade Stadium. Spectators at all the events will be subject to symptom screening upon entry and will be asked to provide information in case contact tracing measures need to be enforced. For the only home football game of the season, football players will select spectators to attend.

Junior Josh Anderson of the football team is excited to have fans in the stands for their games this season. When asked what it means to the team to have fans back, Anderson stated to the Echo that “it increases the energy level in the stadium. It makes you feel like you are actually playing for someone and not just yourself.” When asked how important fans are to the team he responded, “fans bring an atmosphere to a game day that is unmatched without them present.” Many athletes during the pandemic have made similar comments on the difficulty of playing without fans, but it looks like it will be returning to normal soon. 

If you are not able to attend an athletic event in person, they will all still be available to be streamed live online through the Augsburg Athletics website.