BOISE, Idaho — The NCAA has given the green light for college football and basketball teams to return to campus starting on June 1 for voluntary workouts, so long as they follow state and local guidelines.
But just because we have the June 1 date, doesn't mean things will be back to normal right away.
Boise State coach Bryan Harsin said on Thursday that there will be a phased, and cautious, approach to resuming team activities.
"There is going to be a process," Harsin said. "It's been 78 days since our last practice and 107 days until our first game, so we are all itching to get back. We're all wanting to get back in the office, we all want to get prepared for when the guys are able to get back in June.
"The one thing in college athletics right now is we've got to do it right," he added. "Everybody's got a little different plan, so it's not going to be fair, it's not going to be uniform for every single program, which is fine in my opinion."
Harsin pointed out that by having a large gym and three football fields, the team should be able to keep players socially distanced during practices.
"It's going to happen in stages regardless," he said. "There's just so many guys that you can handle at once."
The team has stayed in regular communication, including weekly emails to players and parents, updating them on plans.
"We asked our guys, 'hey, how do you feel about these things?' And they're ready to come back, ready to get going," Harsin said. "I've talked to some of the parents, and they're like 'get our son out of here, I'm tired of paying for his food.' And so we've had a really good connection."
Concerns about a resurgence in the pandemic this fall has prompted health officials to warn that some sporting events may occur without fans in attendance. And even if fans are allowed, it's possible that many will choose to stay home for safety reasons.
"It's a little bit hard for me to imagine that," Harsin said. "If that's what we have to do, that's what we have to do. But this game is about fans, I think. This game is about the people in the stands - that's college football.
"I hope people that are able to come and be in those seats, because I think it's important, not just for us as a football team, but for our community, for this country," he added. "I think there's a lot of things that football has done for this country and this is a great opportunity if we do it right, and we do it the way we are supposed to do it, that we can really make a difference."
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