After months of uncertainty, we have taken our first steps to having college football. Penn State football players will begin a phased return to campus on June 8. The Nittany Lions are joining programs across the Big Ten, and the rest of college football, in starting to slowly work towards games this fall.
With the incubation period for Covid-19 stretching up to 14 days, players have already begun a prescribed quarantine in their homes. Upon their return to campus they will undergo a Coronavirus test and then be quarantined once again until June 15. Once that date comes around, players that are medically cleared can then start voluntary workouts in groups of less than 20.
The Nittany Lions have not physically been together since early-March, as the coronavirus pandemic forced the University to shift to online learning while the students were away on spring break. The Nittany Lions were just days away from kicking off a crucial stretch of spring practices when the University made that decision.
James Franklin has been adamant that Penn State will use science and data to guide their decision to allow students, including athletes, back on campus, and that will continue to be the case according to the official release. The following steps will be taken with players on campus.
- Education for all student-athletes, coach and staff on Penn State's COVID safety protocols.
- Mandatory daily health screening questionnaire and temperature check for student-athletes, coaches, and staff.
- Required use of personal protective equipment (PPE).
- Adherence to social distancing guidelines for meetings and workouts, including the use of smaller groups for performance enhancement session.
- Enhanced cleaning for all athletics facilities.
- Limited and monitored access to facilities.
"We are looking forward to the return of our student-athletes in the coming weeks and hope this is the first steps to a full return for the fall," Athletics Director Sandy Barbour told Penn State Athletics. "We are appreciative of President Barron for including ICA in this first wave of students coming back to campus.
"We are very confident in our plan and will continue to keep the health, safety and wellbeing of our students, coaches, staff and community as our top priority," continued Barbour. "Our outstanding sports performance group worked with medical experts at both the University, conference and national level, as well as University leadership to develop an extensive return to campus plan for our student-athletes, staff and facilities.