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“I do not know how they do it.” A look at the unmistakable heroes of UW athletics behind the scenes

Even if you are a fan of musk, there is a good chance that you do not know much about Rob Scheideger, who may be the most valuable man of the year at UW Athletics.

But do not feel bad. About a year ago, UW women coach Yaz Farouk did not know much about her either.

Of course he does now. Like everyone who works at UW Athletics.

Schդdeger is the Assistant Sports Director at UW Health, and the coach of the Husky Softball team. But perhaps his most important position in recent years has been chairing the COVID-19 Task Force in Athletics.

Without Rob Scheideger մնացած the rest of the UW coaching staff, the Husky athletes would not have been able to return to university in the fall, it would not have been possible to have these unprecedented sports at the moment.

It is not surprising that Cohen, the director of athletics, called Scheidegger և medical և coaching staff the unwavering heroes of the past year. Farouk will agree.

“Despite the horror of COVID, if there was a glimpse of it all from the beginning, it was Rob Scheideger’s appearance in our week-long head coach,” Farouk said. “Everything was always, ‘Okay, how can we do that?’ It has never been. “Now we can not do X, Y և Z because of COVID.”

“He was from day one, guiding us all on how to solve this puzzle. How do we find out? How do our student-athletes recover? He gave a relief to each meeting. “

The Husky Softball diamond is ready to play a game on Friday, March 12. One year after COVID-19 was discontinued everywhere. (Dean Rutz / The Breaking National)

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Bringing athletes back

In the spring of 2020, UW decided to try to return all its athletes after a break of more than six months due to COVID-19. But there are still many questions about how to do it safely and successfully.

“As a board, we made a commitment that we were going to give our student-athletes the opportunity to come back and train, because we knew how much they needed that community, that they needed to achieve their goals. We did it without knowing when.” “Will there be competition?” Cohen said

Scheidegger, appointed by Cohen as chairman of the newly formed COVID Task Force, has been accused of making the return of student-athletes a reality in the fall.

“It was obviously really possible, really difficult,” Scheideger said. “The NCAA creates action-policy guidelines, Pac-12 has a health-welfare council that provides participation guidelines-requirements, and then to complicate matters further, we are first and foremost subject to what is happening here. ,

“Combining all these requirements to making sure we meet everything everyone wants us to do to run our operations requires a great system.”

The fact that the COVID guidelines were constantly changing made it even more difficult. The trainers had to learn new skills, such as conducting tests. To date, about 10,000 PRC tests և 8,000 antigen tests.

“The idea of ​​Athletes not finding a way (for athletes to return) has never been on the table,” Cohen said. “We were really going to do it, it’s because of Rob. He is a strong optimist; he can be a boy, no matter what obstacles he faces, he sees it as an opportunity to get better. I think his mental abilities, his mentality և the great leadership helped us to realize that we can do the same. ”

Scheidegger praised the return, saying that the return was the result of many, starting with the administration.

“They basically told us and his management that whatever we need to support our student-athletes during this time, we will do it for you,” Scheideger said. “It’s the key. Obviously, my staff is incredible. They have worked incredibly hard in extremely difficult circumstances. “We were able to move forward, to provide our student-athletes with a truly meaningful experience, even in terms of what needs to be done in terms of safety, in terms of COVID prevention.”

Washington leaves for the game with Utah on Saturday.  The University of Utah played the Washington Huskies at Pac-12 Football on November 28, 2020 at Husky Stadium.  (Dean Rutz / The Seattle Times)
Washington leaves for the game with Utah on Saturday. The University of Utah played the Washington Huskies at Pac-12 Football on November 28, 2020 at Husky Stadium. (Dean Rutz / The Breaking National)

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A new challenge

The cunning athletes, of course, returned in the fall. Football started a few months late, but the other fall sports moved to winter / spring, which means an unprecedented number of sports are taking place at the same time.

Every sporting program at UW, except for football 20 to 19, was scheduled for March, and last week the football team just started spring training. It meant an unprecedented demand for training staff who not only have their regular responsibilities.

That’s a lot.

“We were able to add some hourly assistance, some extra staff,” Scheideger said. “Obviously we needed it, not just for the extra things we do for COVID, like running our lab և sample collection, all the extra things we did for our previous work. But as we continued to play all our sports, we needed extra coverage. ”

UW has 16 full-time sports coaches leading 20 sports (22 if you consider closed-open railways separately).

“You do math, four of them just work with football,” Scheideger said.

It does not add up. Therefore, additional assistance is needed և A competent schedule.

Scheidegger manages the coaching schedule, as he oversees three licensed nutritionists, a full-time social worker in the athlete’s department. She coordinates the planning for two clinical psychologists, seven general practitioners, and three orthopedic surgeons who work with the sports department but are not university staff.

Most UW athletes receive daily health care at the medical facility inside the Alaska Airlines Arena. There are 16 training desks, but only half can be used due to COVID restrictions.

“Student-athletes used to be able to just let their athlete see,” said Scheideger. “All appointments need to be made now. So we really needed to increase our organization in order to be able to provide a really high level of health care so far, but it was also organized with slightly narrower areas. ”

Scheidegger said that patience is necessary. “Our sports programs understand that our sports coaches are led in many different directions,” he said.

“Managing those teams is definitely a handful. We had to work really, really hard on the schedule,” he said.

Scheidegger has been the head coach of football since 2005, the director of health. He decided to leave the football post after the 2019 Las Vegas Cup. Moving the soft ball meant that much less athletes had to work, giving him more time to focus on his other responsibilities, including managing COVID operations.

“We are very fortunate to have Rob Scheideger as our Coach of the Year this year, so what a blessing it is for us to have his resources, his information, available to us directly as a softball program,” said UW Softball Coach Heather Tarr. : “It’s a challenge, we’s definitely lucky to have Rob. He is one of the best. “

Athletics coach Rob Scheideger is leaving with the team for Husky Softball Stadium for Friday's game against the University of Seattle.  (Dean Rutz / The Seattle Times)
Athletics coach Rob Scheideger is leaving with the team for Husky Softball Stadium for Friday’s game against the University of Seattle. (Dean Rutz / The Breaking National)

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Doing this for student-athletes

Scheidegger said the biggest challenge is to “create an experience that is worthwhile so that we do not eliminate all the fun and valuable things about participating in sports, but also save the health and safety of our staff, our students.” “Athletes.”

Doing so has taken away the work of many.

“Every employee (raised): we have more than 300 employees,” Cohen said. “Think of the custodial staff who did their best to follow all of those COVID guidelines to create safe, clean places, the staff of the institution that helps to support it, the academic staff who had to find a creative way to actually support our Student athletes, our mental health team և our social workers և all are medical և force և conditioning staff. I can go on և go on. ”

Schideger said his motivation is student-athletes, knowing that they only need a few years to fight for UW. He did not want this to be a lost year for them, he helped make sure it was not.

Cohen said that usually after leaving student-athlete, they understand all the things that should create their experience at UW, but he thinks that has changed during COVID. Students get it. The coaches certainly do.

“I’m just trying to think of what a normal year would be like (to do so many sports at once),” Farouk said. “Somehow they do it with COVID testing, certification, cleaning everything, և the whole medical staff… I started shouting because I’m very passionate. They have been burning midnight oil since March 2020.

“I want them to be successful so that they can respect their efforts. I do not even know how to describe how much each student-athlete appreciates the staff, յուրաքանչյուր each staff member appreciates what the coaching staff is magically pulling և the coaching staff. I do not know how they do it. I really do not. “

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