SEC includes task force ‘blueprint’ for safe return to campus activity
ATHENS — The SEC included guidances and best practices for student-athletes and support personnel to adhere to once the football and basketball players return to campus on June 8.
Coaches will not be allowed to supervise nor garner reports on the student-athletes’ activity through the month of June. NCAA regulations allow only strength and conditioning coaches to supervise the workouts.
There is a waiver, however, that allows eight hours of virtual film review through June 30 for football and basketball.
The league presidents and chancellors appointed a “Return to Activity and Medical Guidance Task Force,” in April. It’s a group made up of top public health, infectious disease and sports medicine professionals from across the SEC’s 14 schools.
Per the SEC release,
In addition to standard infection prevention measures as approved by public health authorities such as facility cleaning and social distancing, recommended enhanced health and safety measures include:
- Enhanced education of all team members on health and wellness best practices, including but not limited to preventing the spread of COVID-19
- A 3-stage screening process that involves screening before student-athletes arrive on campus, within 72 hours of entering athletics facilities and on a daily basis upon resumption of athletics activities
- Testing of symptomatic team members (including all student-athletes, coaches, team support and other appropriate individuals)
- Immediate isolation of team members who are under investigation or diagnosed with COVID-19 followed by contact tracing, following CDC and local public health guidelines
- A transition period that allows student-athletes to gradually adapt to full training and sport activity following a period of inactivity
SEC commissioner Greg Sankey has said since the onset of the COVID-19 crises, as far back as March 12, that the league would prioritize the safety of the student-athletes at each step.
“The safe and healthy return of our student-athletes, coaches, administrators and our greater university communities have been and will continue to serve as our guiding principle as we navigate this complex and constantly-evolving situation,” Sankey said in Friday’s release.
“At this time, we are preparing to begin the fall sports season as currently scheduled, and this limited resumption of voluntary athletic activities on June 8 is an important initial step in that process.
“Thanks to the blueprint established by our Task Force and the dedicated efforts of our universities and their athletics programs, we will be able to provide our student-athletes with far better health and wellness education, medical and psychological care and supervision than they would otherwise receive on their own while off campus or training at public facilities as states continue to reopen.”
UGA director of sports medicine Ron Courson, who one year ago today (May 22) is credited with saving the life of Georgia quarterback D’Wan Mathis, represents UGA in task force.
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