EL’s Coach Smith Special Gesture to 2020 Seniors


The East Lansing girls basketball team saw their magical 23-1 season come to a end this past week, when the Michigan High School Athletic Association canceled all sports for the rest of the school year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Knowing how talented the 2020 senior class was, Head Coach Rob Smith is hoping to honor the seniors with a symbolic addition to their uniforms.

“For next year’s team it’s gonna be about dedicating every to this year’s seniors you know we wanna get our motto from this year ‘Whatever It Takes’ stiched on our uniforms with the seniors first names underneath that someplace you know to commemorate but also extend the season they weren’t able to finish. We’re gonna do everything in our power to make sure that their efforts are recognized and that their contributions continue on as we move on into 2021,” said Smith.

Senior Forward Aaliyah Nye, who will be playing at the University of Illinois next season, couldn’t be happier with Coach Smith’s suggestion.

“That means a lot like it feels like we’re still like playing in high school and they’re keeping our tradition on and who knows they might win next year like they just have to keep working hard and that’s like very special I’m glad that he might do that,” said Nye.

For the Executive Director of the MHSAA, Mark Uyl, this is a moment in history he’ll never forget and hopes this senior class will use this moment in history as a lesson in life.

“There will be some point I’m sure down the road to where they’ll be able to draw upon getting through this tough time and it’ll make them better and stronger person because of it. I know that’s hard to hear right now but our hearts are just with our seniors. These young men and women in the class of 2020 will always have a special place for us,” said Uyl.

Aaliyah Nye sees his moment as a spark that will only light a flame for the Trojans she’s leaving behind.

“We’re giving like the other girls, the younger girls, motivation for next year like you have to come harder like do this for us like you can do this next year and just get rings for our team next year,” said Nye.

The addition to the uniforms will first have to be approved by the MHSAA before the next season.

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