At this time last year, players on South Arkansas Community College’s basketball teams were having to conduct offseason workouts from their homes due to the coronavirus pandemic.
This summer, things have proceeded in a more normal manner.
“We have sent our student-athletes their summer workout program,” said South Arkansas Community College men’s and women’s head coach Nate Davis.
“Those who are currently enrolled in summer classes are able to utilize our facilities, which is a huge plus. Last year I feel like our players were so unsure of what the season would bring, there were a few times I’m sure they didn’t see the light at the end of the tunnel. I feel that the motivational and morale is much higher all around at this point.”
For Davis himself, seeing the players in person has been invaluable as he continues to build both programs.
“For both sides, this has been a much more hands on and face-to-face offseason as compared to last year,” Davis said. “We were fortunate enough to even be able to play last season, but now that we can prepare better during the offseason, I feel this coming season will be much more successful.
“The offseason will play a large part in that as well. We can’t wait and try and play our way in shape, the season starts now. Fortunately, I have a better understanding where we actually are this offseason as compared to last.”
Davis has also hit the recruiting trail and has brought in big classes for the upcoming season.
“I am very excited for this fall,” Davis said. “Both programs will have some key returners as well as the addition of some solid new players. Our men’s team will have near 20 on the roster while the women will be around 12.”
The Stars coach said he is pleased with the players he has signed.
“The players we have coming in this season for both the men’s and women’s team is very solid,” Davis said.
“We have a lot of new local talent that we are proud to have. We have brought in a handful of new guards for both programs as well as post players.”
Davis also didn’t rule out bringing anyone else aboard, but feels that both rosters are essentially set.
“Who knows what could happen over the remainder of the summer, but I feel like both programs are pretty much complete at the moment,” Davis said.
The Stars did not have fans at games last season due to the pandemic, but should they be allowed to come back this season, they will be able to see SouthArk’s renovated gymnasium in person.
“We are also looking at bringing our fans back for the upcoming season,” Davis said. “We have some special local talent that will be able to showcase their skills on campus this year.”