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Report: Texas Governor Says Don't Expect College Football Stadiums to be Above 50% Capacity

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott warned college football programs across the state to not expect to fill their stadiums above 50% capacity this fall, according to USA Today's Dan Wolken.

A source told Wolken that Abbott held a Zoom call Friday with 12 athletic directors from Texas universities and addressed crowd sizes amid the coronavirus pandemic.

"Abbott's message to the athletics directors was clear, according to the person with knowledge of the call: It would take either a vaccine or a drastic drop in cases for capacity to increase beyond 50% and that schools should not count on either development by the time the football season starts," Wolken wrote.

Late last month, Abbott approved a plan for fans to attend outdoor sporting events at up to 25% capacity. On June 3, he raised it to 50% capacity—and included the Mavericks' American Airlines Center in the plan—in an effort to help the state's economy. 

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Texas A&M athletic director Ross Bjork and Texas athletic director Chris Del Conte have recently expressed their hopes for filling their stadiums this fall. 

Abbott's call comes after the state of Texas has seen a spike in positive coronavirus cases over the past two weeks. Houston announced Friday it has suspended all voluntary workouts after six student athletes tested positive for the coronavirus. The school said it chose to halt the workouts—which started on June 1 with football and men's and women's basketball—"out of an abundance of caution." According to the Houston Chronicle's Joseph Duarte, the university did not test athletes for COVID-19 upon arrival.

Harris County, which contains the city of Houston, has reached Level 2 in its four-level COVID-19 threat system. The Level 2 designation means the city is under significant threat and the spread of the virus is uncontrolled despite state and local health efforts. Residents have been advised to have minimal contact with others.