comscore University of Hawaii wants to expand coronavirus testing to include its football team | Honolulu Star-Advertiser
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University of Hawaii wants to expand coronavirus testing to include its football team

  • BRUCE ASATO / JAN. 22
                                University of Hawaii football coach Todd Graham, former head coach at Arizona State, holds a football bearing the UH athletics logo.

    BRUCE ASATO / JAN. 22

    University of Hawaii football coach Todd Graham, former head coach at Arizona State, holds a football bearing the UH athletics logo.

Over the next two weeks, the University of Hawaii is seeking to expand COVID-19 testing to include all of its football players, a school spokesman said today.

This summer, the athletic department had been following state and NCAA guidelines in conducting suspicion-based testing on an undisclosed number of players and coaches. The suspicion-based tests were in addition to the daily screenings — temperature readings and questionnaires on exposure risks and symptoms — that were performed before a player or coach was allowed to participate in on-campus activities. None of the suspicion-based tests has produced a positive result for the coronavirus, school officials reported. UH did not disclose the number of tests administered.

Last week, the NCAA recommended “surveillance” testing for 25% to 50% of a football team during this offseason period, which involves meetings, weight training, conditioning drills and walk-through sessions. This training phase began for the Warriors the past Friday.

The spokesman said UH is seeking to go beyond that NCAA recommendation and test all the UH football players over the next two weeks. The tests are likely to be administered with small groups over several days. There are more than 100 players on the summer roster.

The players will not have to pay for the tests, the spokesman said. The exact costs of the tests have not been determined. UH will release the figures and payment breakdowns when they are finalized.

Since July 6, when the campus was opened to NCAA-permitted workouts, the Warriors have adhered to social-distancing measures. Meetings have been conducted outdoors in front of several players spaced at least 12 feet apart. The rest of the players watched videocasts of the meetings on outdoor monitors on the campus. Walk-through sessions are divided into small groups, with players 5 yards apart during drills. Players also are kept at a distance during weight training.

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