The Colorado Buffaloes football team is ahead of where they would be if there was no pandemic, according to head coach Karl Dorrell.
In a media conference call on Friday, Dorrell noted his coaching staff has been able to install more of their system with the team because most of spring practice was canceled.
“If we would have had spring practice which would have been in April, and we would have had the spring game and that would have been like the third week or so in April, and then after that quickly we would have done a quick recap of spring and then the coaches would be gone for a month recruiting.”
Dorrell says the players have been saturated with information. The next step is practicing with multiple repetitions. That will most likely come in July when football coaches will be allowed to coach in-person with their players for the first time since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic.
According to Sports Illustrated’s Ross Dellenger, the NCAA is set to approve a plan to allow football walk-throughs as early as mid-July.
Starting June 15, Pac-12 athletes will be allowed to return to campus for voluntary activities. Dorrell said most of his players are back on campus, getting their physicals, and being tested for the novel coronavirus. The players all had to quarantine for seven days before being tested for the virus.
Most of the testing will be conducted this week and Dorrell said they will be completely transparent with the results.
The athletes have already begun practicing on their own in larger groups. It has been mostly the skill position players on offense up against the linebackers and defensive backs.
"They're completely working on their own and I've been very pleased with their efforts and doing that because they understand, they get it, they understand they missed a lot of time," Dorrell said.
Even after June 15, the coaching staff will conduct all meetings over Zoom, to avoid large gatherings.
“Over the last several months (we) have gotten more and more used to this medium, in terms of conveying information,” Dorrell said. “(It) hasn't been the best, but it has been productive while we are moving forward.”
Another relic of the coronavirus pandemic may be the virtual visits for the recruits.
“We've had really really good feedback on all of our virtual visits,” Dorrell said. “It is something that I think is kind of we have in our back pocket. I would rather do it in person but if it's something that continues….we can quickly accommodate those wishes and still think we can get the information that needs to be brought up to the forefront in a very good efficient manner.”
Throughout the pandemic, Coach Dorrell has refrained from sharing his opinion on the pandemic as some of his counterparts, instead choosing to follow the guidance given by the experts.
“I'm not a doctor. Remember I'm a football coach I'm just told to do things a certain way and I'm trying to adhere to those things.”