NCAA Approves On-Campus Training For Football, Basketball Athletes

Brett Friedlander

The NCAA Division I Council voted Wednesday to approve voluntary on-campus training activities for athletes participating in football, men's basketball and women's basketball, ending a moratorium that has been in place since mid-March.

All other sports will be voted on at a later date. 

That's good news for players, coaches and fans hoping for the return of college sports this fall.

Just don't get too excited just yet.

According to the release issued by the NCAA announcing the move, access to team facilities are still contingent on "applicable state and local regulations regarding the use of such facilities, group size restrictions and any other limits."

School and conference officials will also likely have to give their approval as well. The ACC, for instance, has its own suspension of campus activities in place.

So what does today's ruling mean for NC State?

Athletic department spokesman Fred Demarest that it's "premature to comment at the current time" and that school administrators will "continue to evaluate what the ultimate path forward looks like."

Because schools across the state remain closed and "gyms, indoor fitness facilities and health clubs" were not included in the facilities allowed to re-open under Gov. Roy Cooper's Phase 2 plan announced Wednesday, it's unlikely that Wolfpack athletes will be begin flocking back to the Murphy Center and Dail Basketball Center on June 1.

Even when they are allowed to return, their workouts will be strictly voluntary. They must be initiated by the student-athlete. 

While the workouts may be monitored by the school's strength and conditioning staff, coaches can not be present unless a sport-specific safety exception allows it. The activity can not be directed by a coach or reported back to a coach.  

According to NCAA Council chair M. Grace Calhoun said, safety remains NCAA's the primary interest.

"We encourage each school to use its discretion to make the best decisions possible for football and basketball student-athletes within the appropriate resocialization framework,” said Calhoun, athletic director at Penn. “Allowing for voluntary athletics activity acknowledges that reopening our campuses will be an individual decision but should be based on advice from medical experts.”  

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