News out of Louisville today as U of L has decided to pause all athletics activities for their men’s basketball team after two “members of the program” have tested positive for Covid-19.
Louisville announces that men’s basketball has paused all offseason activities after two members of the program had positive COVID-19 tests. pic.twitter.com/uDhOF2pAxx— Mark Ennis (@MarkEnnis) July 7, 2020
The names of those impacted have not been released.
The Cards generate more revenue and profit than any team in college basketball, so they’ll have more resources to overcome this crisis than anyone. But if one of the sports signature brands can’t keep players and staff safe from this pandemic, what does it say for the mid-majors and HBCU’s of the sport?
While this happening now won’t impact schedules on a sport that isn’t scheduled to tip-off until November, it’s another example of how universities aren’t prepared to deal with a pandemic and athletes. The NBA and MLS can head to a bubble (though even that hasn’t worked out perfectly), but college sports are specifically designed to be recreational activities for amateur students.
And when you can’t strictly quarantine or feed them a diet of $65 ham and cheese sandwiches because they aren’t professionals you can isolate from their community, these outbreaks will likely continue as teams return to campus.
It’s not if this is going to happen again, but when. And this is the reality for collegiate athletics programs everywhere.