From the National Stage to BHS, the Offseason Shapes Success

By Seth Pierson

With the return of the school year, thousands of Berkeley High School (BHS) students will begin the transition back to school. While the stress and lack of sleep that accompanies the school year will return, something much more exciting is also coming back: Yellowjacket sports. This fall will see the return of our very own football and volleyball teams, as well as field hockey, cross country and more. The casual fan is probably unaware that one of the most important parts of these team’s seasons has already passed: the off-season.

The manner in which each team approaches the off-season can make or break their season.

While some will view it as a chance to relax, others will see it as an opportunity to get ahead of the competition. Athletes that utilize the offseason to improve will soon reap the rewards, while those who do not will spend the early stages of the season playing catch up. 

BHS volleyball began preparing for the season all the way back in June and throughout the summer. The women’s team held optional practices  which were available to anyone interested in joining the team throughout the summer. This allowed James Manuel, the new volleyball coach, to assess the talent level available to him before tryouts. 

In the professional sports world, off seasons are further complicated by both trades and transfers. Recently, Paris Saint Germain, a French powerhouse, broke the world transfer record by agreeing a $262 million fee with Barcelona for Brazilian sensation Neymar. This unprecedented fee showcases the current inflation in the transfer market, which has further complicated transfer dealings. In the English Premier League, some clubs such as Manchester United and Manchester City have each spent over 100 million euros on transfers, while their competitors Tottenham Hotspurs only recently acquired their first signing. These differences showcase how the offseason allows certain teams to advance, while others stagnate.

Weeks after Cleveland Cavaliers’ star Kyrie Irving requested a trade, his move to the Celtics was confirmed on the 22nd. This high profile move will be one of the most anticipated storylines in the upcoming season within the Eastern Conference.

In other news within the sports world, NFL teams have recently began their exhibition games. Time will only tell whether or not these games prove worthwhile as teams make their final preparations for the upcoming season.

Regardless of how BHS athletes spent their offseason, we wish them the best of luck in the coming seasons. BHS has always had a strong athletic program, and there is no reason to think this year will be any different.