Collin College basketball fans will have another option for watching the bold and the blue this season. All home games will be streamed live on athletics.collin.edu and the Collin athletics Facebook page @CollinAthletics.
"We are excited for family, friends and other coaches to have an opportunity to continue following our games," said Dr. Albert Tezeno, Collin College's athletics director. "Streaming games provides a safe alternative for those who can't come out to the games and ensures that no one gets left out with our reduced audience capacity."
In addition to providing fans online access to the games, a streaming format provides an opportunity for recruiting coaches to watch players. Collin College's stands are often frequented by basketball coaches from around the country. Recent Collin College players have gone to Texas State University, the University of Texas at El Paso, the University of North Carolina Wilmington, and West Virginia University. However, with COVID-19 restrictions, many universities have significantly limited in-person recruiting and evaluation.
"It varies now depending on what their school's policies are, but outside of COVID a lot of them come out to recruit," said Torrey West, associate dean of Student and Enrollment Services "We had (University of Kansas Coach) Bill Self in here a couple of years ago."
The college has been investigating the best ways to stream games for a couple of years but accelerated its plans this season due to capacity restrictions brought about by COVID.
West says he expects viewership will be decent in this first year, perhaps even adding a few new fans.
"We will get more people because it is more convenient," he said. "It will be a mix because we will have people who will still want to be at the game in person."
West said that if this streaming format is successful, the college will move to bring its tennis matches online as well. He said the college has been reviewing different options but has not determined how they will do it yet.
"Tennis is a little harder, but I do see us going in that direction at some point," he said. "It's going to be a slow process because there are so many courts and they usually do nine matches."
Fortunately for tennis fans, that sport is played outdoors with plenty of room to socially distance, so fans can still enjoy the matches. Tennis will kick off shortly after basketball in January.