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SEC expands COVID-19 testing requirements

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) – The SEC announced Friday that it has added to its COVID-19 management requirements for fall sports.

The league is now requiring three weekly tests instead of two.

Athletes will be required to have two PCR tests per week and a third rapid diagnostic test closer to game day. Further cardiac evaluation will also be required for athletes returning to competition after a positive test.

“We remain vigilant in monitoring the trends and effects of COVID-19 as we learn more about the virus, and this cardiac evaluation enhances the effectiveness of the protocols already in place,” said SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey.

“We are confident in our institutions’ ability to provide a healthy environment supported by rigorous testing and surveillance. Our student-athletes have indicated their desire to compete and it is our responsibility to make every effort to deliver a healthy and medically sound environment for providing that opportunity.”

In Lexington, Kentucky football practice looks different with players and coaches wearing masks. Defensive end Josh Paschal says the team is constantly reminded to follow safety protocols.

“It’s different because just being in drills and things of that sort, the trainers are all around so they are making sure that we are social distancing while we’re on the field,” said Paschal. “That’s something they are really keying on. If they see us close together they are telling us to spread apart. If we have our helmet off and don’t have our mask on, they are telling us to put our mask on and keep a safe distance. So they’re making sure that they’re putting our safety first and they are taking care of us.”

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