Covid-19 Cuts Down on Fan Capacity at Football Games

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Ray Manus stadium filled out

Bella Dombrowski, Staff Writer

Being a player looking at the stands and seeing a much smaller crowd that’s spaced out can really affect a team’s morale. Due to the recent global pandemic, a real toll has been taken on the RHS sports and fans. One of the biggest downsides of this is the stadium capacity limitation of 30% by new GHSA rules, which are the tickets that are selling out quickly. Leaving many people to stay home and watch the game live missing out on the normal Friday night fun. The Ray Manus stadium can fit 3,000 people max. The reduction has led to a max of 822 people allowed which still seems like a very large amount considering the circumstances.

Some math was done to really see how many people it could safely fit. By first using the track as a measurement, the home stands where about 73 yards or 219 feet. Once the measurement of the stands was made it was possible to find the real scale. Then the conclusion was made that the stadium can hold about 439 people in the home stands and about 136 people in the away stands. Not only were the Roswell student numbers discovered, but the measurements for Centennial and Milton high school were too. Centennial can hold roughly 392 people in the home stands and 130 people in the away stands of the 3200 max capacity. About 16% of the stadium is able to be used following a very strict 6-foot radius social distance from person to person. A 707 fan capacity limit on the home stands and 236 with the away stands was made which is about 29% of their normal capacity. While Milton’s Stadium can hold 6000 people only 653 people can fit in the home stands and 248 people in the away stands while staying liberally spaced. Which is only 15% of the normal stadium capacity numbers projected much lower than the decrease now.

To see how these types of reductions are affecting other sports and players I asked Hannah Gore, senior, an RHS softball player if the reduction has affected her and if she saw a difference. “We usually don’t get that many fans so I feel like the attendant numbers will not be affected nearly as much as football”. Emma Stokes, sophomore Member of the RHS volleyball team says “It has affected me because it feels really different to be playing in a sports game without any spectators since I’ve been used to that for my whole life.” Many players have been affected differently from these restrictions, but at the end of the day it’s playing the sport that really matters.

The 30% reduction is probably not enough to be able to properly distance yourself. As you can see from the data above 30% just isn’t enough, 15% would be ideal. Keep in mind these aren’t 100 percent accurate there are certain circumstances that come into play like people who have quarantined together and are able to stay closer than 6 feet. We can only really see how this reduction will work when executed. For more information about what fans are doing in these times check out Deniz Ilksoy’s article. While many students aren’t happy with this new situation, it has to be done amid this pandemic.