Friday, May 22, 2020
Louisville announce some student-athletes back to campus -- FRIDAY CARDINAL COUPLE
FOOTBALL, MBB and WBB SLATED TO RETURN
You may have seen this yesterday, but the NCAA has given universities permission to bring student athletes for football, men's and women's basketball back on campus in a limited basis for voluntary workouts. UofL Athletics announced a plan yesterday. The return is scheduled for May 27th It's a phased plan, 12 days ahead of any volunteer physical activity. A limited number of student-athletes are in Phase I.
It's a good first sign for football fans that hopefully we have football this fall. No one knows for sure what the season is going to look like but let's stay positive that come Thursday night September 3rd, the Football Cards will welcome NC State to Cardinal Stadium.
We are a women's sports site, so seeing the news that WBB will also be allowed to return for "open gym" caught my attention as well. I also wonder about other UofL women's fall sports, like Field Hockey and Women's Soccer.
Under the first phase, a limited group of student-athletes, around 30 in football and 15 in MBB and WBB, would arrive on the 27th. to receive education on protocols. Testing and physical examinations start June 3rd and voluntary physical training, not directed by coaching staffs could begin June 8th.
Three facilities in phase one would be open with limited occupancy. The Schnellenberger Football Complex, the Trager Center and the Planet Fitness Kueber Center. Louisville is the first ACC school to make a move like this.
It is not required participation.
If all goes well, in this Phase I, and if the NCAA gives a "go ahead" more football players and around 60 other Olympic sport student-athletes could arrive on campus on June 10th. This is Phase II.
During Phase II, additional facilities would be opened. Limited occupancy, staggered workout sessions and voluntary participation are the standards.
A Phase III and Phase IIII are planned for July and August. We'll hold off here on detailing those, because they are over a month away and plans can always be altered or modified due to results. Especially if the NCAA is involved. Trying to predict what they'll do is akin to having a conversation with a horse about winning a race.
The UofL Athletic administrators and health officials have these goals for the phased re-openings:
-- Provide a phased progression into athletic activity to promote mental and physical well being.
-- Provide a phased approach of opening and use of athletic facilities
-- Provide a safe environment that allows transitioning into supervised activity to improve the student-athletes strength and conditioning
-- Implement and adhere to operational guidelines to minimize the risk of virus transmission among student-athletes and staff.
-- Creating an environment tthat generates a change in personal hygiene practices so that the best practices are bring used in individual life.
Vince Tyra, UofL Vice-President/Director of Athletics, outlined the plan yesterday in a teleconference. You can here the entire teleconference at the link below. Be advised, it is a long teleconference, about 45 minutes, so plan accordingly.
Personally, I have so many questions and thoughts about this. But, since no one really knows the answers yet, I'll look at this declaration as being "what it is" and see how it plays out. It's really all any of us can do, we've never been in this situation before. It's painting in broad strokes, so to speak, and the detailing is being worked out. A surge in cases and deaths could belay these plans, obviously.
There is no specific date for the rest of the fall sports or student-athletes to return to campus. There is only proposed and phased plans. It is a train light at the end of the tunnel, I suppose, but this train is also being driven by an economic engine.
My main hope and wish is that the student-athletes are able to stay safe, healthy and are well taken care of. I trust our University will provide these things. Yes, we all want sports, but human lives and safety far out-weigh our entertainment wishes.
Have a fortunate Friday!