Yes, they made the right call

Chris Werner, Sports Reporter

The Big Ten and Commissioner Kevin Warren made the correct decision to postpone this year’s fall sports season.

Look at the professional sports leagues that have restarted recently amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The NBA and NHL have both established “bubble sites” for games, while the MLB has not. Which of those leagues has had the most trouble with COVID-19, resulting in canceled games? The MLB has, and now some experts fear it may not finish its season.

The only league that decided not to operate within a bubble system when it started its schedule is in jeopardy of losing its season, despite rigorous COVID-19 testing and prevention protocols.

How could we expect college athletes and teams — that can’t be put in a bubble because students have returned to campuses — to feel safe competing?

If an athlete was to even simply attend an in-person class and become infected by someone who was asymptomatic, then participate in a game against another school, the domino effect could begin. The virus spreading from an asymptomatic carrier to another person is rare, but a very real possibility.

The only way around the asymptomatic infection scenario would be for the Big Ten to mandate that every athlete as well as staff member is tested before every team activity, whether that be a game, practice, workout, in-person meeting, etc.

“All sports will be required to test a minimum of once weekly, while sports with high contact risk will be required to test a minimum of twice weekly. Required testing frequency is based upon the level of contact risk within the sport and is required for student-athletes as well as coaches and additional staff members,” The Big Ten stated in its COVID-19 Virus Testing Bulletin on Aug. 5.

This policy leaves gaps in testing that could allow the virus to spread.

So, until the Big Ten deems sporting events safe again, Hawkeye fans will just have to be happy watching old Iowa games on TV.

Facebook Comments