Football athletes will be allowed to return to campus for voluntary workouts starting on June 1, according to a report from ESPN.
Football and basketball will be the first two groups allowed back on campus, but more could follow in the coming weeks. The NCAA previously instituted a moratorium regarding on-campus activities through May 31.
The decision clears the biggest roadblock facing universities in returning from the COVID-19 pandemic. However, individual conferences – like the SEC and Big 12 – will still meet and make their own risk assessments before letting their member institutions hold football activities. Still, the announcement is a positive step for college football to return in the fall.
The recruiting dead period is still expected to extend until at least June 30. Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby told 247Sports that it's likely that his conference will not open until at least mid-June. Oklahoma coach Lincoln Riley called the idea of a return to campus as early as June 1 "ridiculous."
There has been a push towards sports returning in the past few weeks. Texas governor Greg Abbott declared that professional sports teams can return to the field on May 31 without fans. Youth sports and overnight camps will also be allowed. New York and California also rank among the states that will allow pro sports in the near future. Several universities have already announced that they plan to hold in-person classes.
Before any sports can return, the leagues must submit a comprehensive plan for protocols to prevent the spread of COVID-19. College football unquestionably faces the same questions, especially as one of the most geographically vast sports in America.
Texas high school football will allow summer strength and conditioning workout to open on June 8.
This article is available to our Digital Subscribers.
Click "Subscribe Now" to see a list of subscription offers.
Already a Subscriber? Sign In to access this content.