This story has been updated to include a statement by Florida Associate Director of Athletics Steve McClain.
11 Florida Gators student-athletes have tested positive for COVID-19, team sources confirmed to Sports Illustrated – AllGators. One of those student athletes tested positive through the Florida Screen, Test and Protect Program, initiated to initiate voluntary training.
“Since April, we have had a total of 11 student athletes from several of our teams who tested positive. As we’ve said before, we will have positive evidence and with the guidance of UF Health, we feel we are well positioned to handle those cases. “- Steve McClain, Florida Senior Associate Director of Athletics
What seemed inevitable has become reality. The University of Florida had managed to stay away from a coronavirus outbreak for several weeks, while student athletes returned to campuses across the country for volunteer training since May 26.
As of June 9, the latest UF update regarding testing between students and athletes before the outbreak, 87 players had been assessed with 80 negative results and seven pending at the time. Two student-athletes had tested positive outside the back-to-campus program at the time, and are included in the total of 11 positive cases.
This is a reality for which the university has been preparing since before the Screen, Test and Protect program was presented, given the contagious nature of the disease.
“We are fully prepared to have a positive attitude and we are going to have to isolate that person and also go through the state healthy follow-up program,” Associate Athletic Director of Sports Health Stacey Higgins said previously. mes. “If it becomes too much, that’s where the people at UF Health will help us with that process.”
Schools across the country. like Alabama, Clemson, LSU, and many others have reported large numbers of positive cases since the players began arriving on campus. The University of Houston closed its voluntary training program shortly after it began, after six student-athletes tested positive for coronavirus, while the Houston area saw an increase in positive cases.
The NCAA Division 1 Council approved a six-week soccer preseason program on June 17, allowing coaches and players to start training in mid-July. However, in an interview with Ross Dellenger from Illustrated Sports earlier this month, chairman of the NCAA Division I Football Oversight Committee Shane Lyons warned that the preseason program could fail programs individually, depending on increases in cases.
“You could end up having a peak state and go back to Phase I,” said Lyons. Illustrated Sports. “That’s where you will have to deal with that locally and not nationally.”
According to the Florida Department of Health as of a June 22 update, more than 98,000 state residents and more than 2,100 non-residents have tested positive for COVID-19, with 3,173 deaths. Over the past week, the state of Florida has consistently established new daily case records as testing has increased across the state, including a four-day period of more than 3,000 positive cases per day and a daily maximum of 4,049 positive established on Saturday.
Alachua County, where the University of Florida is located, reports 737 positive cases and 11 deaths, according to the Florida Department of Health.
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