While large crowds cheering on Statesmen athletics are unable to take their usual place on the bleachers, a new FCPS deal will let fans watch the games from the comfort of their own home.
The installation of cameras in both the gym and football fields will permit the audience at home to view the games for free.
While neighboring counties have already cancelled their winter sports season, Fairfax County still expects to have their athletes on the field come December.
“We are fully expecting that winter sports will go on as planned,” Principal Jeff Litz said at a town hall meeting on Oct. 29.
Varsity football player and junior Gabe Espinola has played in games with packed crowds before, but he will experience empty stadiums for the first time in his high school career.
“I think it’s a good idea that […] people can still experience games in a virtual environment so it’s safer and the players can still show off their skills to the community,” Espinola said.
Varsity basketball player and junior Eli Nassif also said he likes the implementation of live-streamed games.
“Obviously, it sucks not being able to have fans at the game,” Nassif said. “[But, live-streaming] has some benefits, like other family members who don’t live close can easily watch games that normally they wouldn’t be able to.”
Though coaches will be able to see the games of players they may be interested in recruiting, Nassif said he believes there is a possible limitation to the live-streaming.
“Coaches can always watch film so even if it’s not live they still have access to film, but they won’t be able to see in person which could potentially be a down side,” Nassif said. “ it’ll be fun to watch other teams that we may play. Especially since it’s so easy and not a large time commitment.”
Litz said he expects the cameras to be in place by late December or early January at the latest, slightly after the VHSL Winter Season start date of Dec. 14.