UNE Football Prepares For Kickoff In A Hopeful 2021

The UNE football team has made the most of the extended off season by continuing to practice and improve however they can.

UNEs Blue Terf

UNE’s Blue Terf

The date is July 17, 2020. Athletes all around the country are hearing the disappointing news that their fall-sports season will be canceled due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The fall athletes at the University of New England joined that long list as the Commonwealth Coast Conference made the decision to cancel all conference-regulated activity for the 2020 season.


The decision also allowed for member institutions to have the autonomy to schedule practices and competition with other schools that opt to compete. The final note on the CCC’s decision to cancel the 2020 season, left open an opportunity for the conference to adjust the schedule and allow competition in the event that the NCAA should permit fall competition. 


For UNE athletes, that day never came.


Instead, with their hopes of playing games in the near future diminished, all they could do was put their heads down, hit the weight room, and get better for whenever that day comes when they can step on the field again and represent UNE. 


The football team wasted no time getting back to work when the semester kicked into gear. 

“We still give all of our efforts even though we aren’t playing any games right now. We are just trying to have fun because practice and early lifts are way better than nothing,” said Joe Kucky, a senior of UNE’s football program.  


 As the fall went on, the team found themselves on the Blue Court, (due to COVID restrictions), getting in a quick lift before strapping on their helmets and hitting the field for quick, fast-paced practice. The daily structure was very different and difficult to adjust to for many players and as a result, football didn’t quite feel the same. Despite the struggles, the goal was still the same, Win the CCC…whenever that may be.

The football team was able to hold one intra-squad scrimmage; offense vs. defense before the fall semester ended, however, all football activity would be halted due to a positive test within the program. With the “season” abruptly over, the team could only look forward to some renewed hope in the spring semester.

Football Practice Pre-Covid (Jack Allsopp)


After being home during the winter break, the team was able to come back and get right back to it. The team almost had to start from square one in terms of getting everyone in shape again. Depending on where home is for some players, they couldn’t access a gym to do team-issued workouts and had either makeshift or no equipment at home. 


For seniors on the team, this semester would have been their time to reflect on the past four years of building a program from the ground up and finally enjoy some well-deserved time off before graduation. Instead many of them are going to leave with eligibility left due to the pandemic stripping away the season that was supposed to be the culmination of years of hard work. 


For the handful of seniors who decided to return for next fall season, the feeling of having unfinished business here at UNE is motivating them to extend their careers another semester, 


“I came back for my love for the sport and since the season was just ripped away from us, I felt like our jobs aren’t done,” said Kucky. 


Kucky and his teammates may not be strapping up the pads on Saturdays yet, but they

want to improve every day is still present within the team, 


As the semester goes on and safety protocols are updated, football will look and feel normal again. Until then, the players are going to continue to safely participate in lifts and walkthroughs with the hope that in the near future, they will be able to represent UNE on the blue turf.