Former Virginia Tech defensive back Caleb Farley opted out of the 2020 college football season last week, citing health concerns and a need to keep his family safe. Farley will spend time this fall preparing for the NFL Draft instead of taking the field for the Hokies in the middle of the Coronavirus pandemic.
Farley detailed his concerns with Peter King's Football Morning in America on Monday and dove into the reasons why he elected to opt out of the season. Needless to say, some of the comments he made about the Virginia Tech football program were alarming.
"This year at Virginia Tech, at our workouts, I started having deep concerns about staying healthy. Guys were going home, going to Myrtle Beach, coming back to campus, and we weren't getting tested. We're all together, working out, close to each other, and you have no real idea who might have it, if anybody might have it.
One day I looked around, and we were like 100-deep in our indoor facility, no masks. My concern grew more and more. I started being really conflicted about playing. What this came down to is, I lost one parent. My dad is important to me. Growing old with him means so much to me, more than football. I don't know what I would do if I contracted it and gave it to him, and he passed. I couldn't live with that. Part of me thought, I put all my eggs into this basket since I was 6 years old...just suck it up and play. Try to stay safe. But I couldn't ignore all the doubts in my head," Farley explained.
There are obviously some troubling items in here for Virginia Tech, if true. Norm Wood of The Daily Press provided some context that he received from a Virginia Tech spokesperson on Monday:
Regarding Farley's comments directly, the athletic department declined comment.
While there is plenty of ambiguity in regard to what is true and what isn't in Farley's statement to Peter King, there is a broader need for transparency within the athletic department in regard to active protocols to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.
To that end, a source told AllHokies.com recently that there was an issue with players sharing masks within the football facility, which had to be addressed by the Virginia Tech coaching staff. While this is not an ongoing issue, this is one of several hurdles that Virginia Tech's staff has dealt with over the past several weeks as workouts have ramped up.
A separate source told AllHokies.com on Monday that COVID-19 testing has taken place across the athletic department, which disputes Farley's statement regarding players not being tested. The results of the testing have not been officially released by the athletic department at any time during the pandemic.
Virginia Tech's athletic department released a statement on Monday afternoon, giving insight into current university testing protocols.
"All athletes are tested and screened before practicing."
Stay with AllHokies.com for more on this developing story.