The spring season is usually a time when college soccer teams are expected to work on building team fitness and improving skill levels. However, sometimes circumstances arise that change all of those expectations.
This spring, many Nebraska communities such as those in Fremont, Waterloo, Valley and elsewhere have seen catastrophic levels of flooding. Many people from around Nebraska have been forced out of their homes as a result of the flooding.
The response to the flooding, both locally and nationally, has been inspiring to see. Many local organizations have been collecting donations and sending aid to those affected by the flood. One of those organizations that has stepped up in this time of need is the Omaha’s men’s soccer team.
In collaboration with the Salvation Army, coach Bob Warming, Matt Briggs and a number of Omaha soccer players organized donation collections to aid those affected by the flooding. For Omaha men’s soccer, this is just one small way they can give back to the community that supports them.
“There’s a lot of people who support our program and there are a lot of people who give back to us, but there’s never enough that we can do to give back to the community,” Omaha soccer’s Seth Rinderknecht said. “What inspires us is the fact that we know there’s somebody in need and that we can help in any way.”
For Omaha soccer players like Rinderknecht, their way of helping was to take time out of their spring break in order to collect donations for those in need. While many other students were off traveling and relaxing, these players were working out of a trailer in the Baxter Arena parking lot.
These players don’t have too much time to spare either. While the regular season may have ended in November, spring practices have been in full swing for Omaha soccer. The team even has some games coming up on their schedule. On March 30 the Mavericks will travel to Kansas City to play USL team Swope Park Rangers.
Despite the busy schedule, there seemed to be little hesitation from the players on the team to help out.
“When something like [this flooding] happens, and guys are available, everyone is willing to give back and help out. It’s kind of what we stand for,” Omaha goalkeeper Adrian Felix said.
While Omaha men’s soccer wrapped up their donation drive on March 22, there are still many ways to give back and help the victims of the flooding. Donations can still be brought to the Salvation Army at 84th and West Center Road. In addition, an option to donate money online can be found at salarmy.org.