Report: NCAA Allows 3-Month Wait After COVID-19 Diagnosis for Next Test

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistJuly 24, 2020

FILE - In this March 18, 2015, file photo, the NCAA logo is displayed at center court as work continues at The Consol Energy Center in Pittsburgh, for the NCAA college basketball tournament. NCAA President Mark Emmert says NCAA Division I basketball tournament games will be played without fans in the arenas because of concerns about the spread of coronavirus. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic, File)
Keith Srakocic/Associated Press

The NCAA has reportedly told schools that student-athletes won't have to undergo another COVID-19 test for three months following a confirmed positive test.

According to Stadium's Brett McMurphy, the exception to that guideline would be if a student-athlete shows symptoms related to the coronavirus.

Such a rule would be in stark contrast to major professional sports in North America, as the NBA and MLB require a player who tested positive for COVID-19 to have two consecutive negative tests at least 24 hours apart in order to rejoin their team.

As a result of the coronavirus pandemic, the end of the winter sport seasons, including the men's and women's NCAA basketball tournaments, were canceled. All spring sports were canceled for 2020 as well.

Plans remain in place to start fall sports on time, but it remains unclear if that will be possible given the environment created by COVID-19.

College football teams began gathering for workouts in recent weeks after missing a significant chunk of spring practice because of the pandemic. It hasn't gone smoothly for many teams, however, with some experiencing a high number of positive COVID-19 tests.

LSU, Clemson, Alabama, Auburn, Florida State, Oklahoma State, Iowa State, Ole Miss, Oklahoma, Kansas and Kansas State are some of the many major conference schools that have publicly revealed that football players have tested positive.

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Per ESPN's Heather Dinich, SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey released the following statement earlier this month regarding the likelihood of a college football season:

"We said from the onset of this pandemic that circumstances around the virus would guide our decision-making, and it is clear recent developments related to COVID-19 have not been trending in the right direction. There are important decisions to be made in the coming weeks, and by late July there should be more clarity about the fall season. In the meantime, our athletics programs will continue to effectively manage the health and safety of our student-athletes as they continue voluntary activities on their respective campuses."

An anonymous FBS commissioner told Dinich they were "very concerned." They added that they are "hopeful" there will be college football this season but "pessimistic" about it starting on time in late August or early September.

Both the Big Ten and Pac-12 have announced plans to play conference-only schedules in 2020 if there is a college football season in an effort to lessen travel and the possible spread of COVID-19.


Bleacher Report's David Gardner interviews athletes and other sports figures for the podcast How to Survive Without Sports.



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