Last week, the SEC announced a major change to its schedule for the upcoming college football season. On Friday, the conference announced new health protocols leading up to each game.
In an effort to keep players safe this fall and minimize travel, the SEC is moving to a conference-only schedule. We’ve already seen the Big Ten, Pac-12 and other conferences go that route.
Next up on the agenda for college football is to establish protocols that’ll reduce the chances of a potential COVID-19 outbreak during the regular season. It appears the SEC has come up with two ways to address that issue.
The SEC announced that its football players will be tested by a third-party provided at least twice per week. Testing will take place six days and three days prior to competition.
In addition to the new testing protocol, the conference revealed that all coaches, staff and non-competing personnel will have to wear face coverings. Physical distancing will be employed as well, but it’s tough to see how coaches will distance themselves from their own players.
SEC commissioner Greg Sankey released a statement on the new protocols, saying “Our health experts have guided us though each stage of preparation for the safe return of activity and, together with the medical staffs embedded within our athletics programs, we will continue to monitor developments around the virus and evolve our plan to meet the health needs of our student-athletes.”
NEWS | The @SEC announces its initial COVID-19 management requirements for the fall athletics season as recommended by the SEC’s Return to Activity and Medical Guidance Task Force.https://t.co/dsghlDXXXW
— Southeastern Conference (@SEC) August 7, 2020
If the SEC is going to have a complete season, teams must follow the protocols laid out for them.
Since the SEC has revised its schedule for the upcoming season, games will not kick off until late September.