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UArizona delays allowing additional student-athletes back to campus

Posted at 6:07 PM, Jun 29, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-29 21:44:34-04

TUCSON, Ariz. — The University of Arizona Athletics Department announced Monday that it will delay bringing additional student-athletes back to campus.

After consultations with the University of Arizona Re-Entry Task Force, Campus Health Services, Pima County Health Department and local health care officials, the University of Arizona Athletics Department made the decision following the increase of positive COVID-19 cases throughout the state, including Pima County.

“Out of an abundance of caution, we have made this decision with campus and community partners to pause our re-entry process. The health, safety and wellbeing of all members of our community is our number one priority. We will continue to work in conjunction with campus partners and our local government agencies to support and evaluate a safe and healthy return to campus," Vice President and Director of Athletics Dave Heeke said in a statement.

The UArizona athletics department had one positive test for COVID-19 of 83 student-athletes who had returned to campus for voluntary physical activities. The individual has followed the state department's guidelines for testing positive.

“Our mission has always been, first and foremost, the safety of our student-athletes, staff and community. “Health and safety continue to be the guiding force in our re-entry process. We will continue to monitor the status and impact of COVID-19 in our community and our ongoing and safe training of student-athletes already on campus. Arizona Athletics will assess when to resume its re-entry process in collaboration with the guidelines and protocols of the University of Arizona, Pac-12 Conference, NCAA, and state and local government agencies," Dr. Stephen Paul of C.AT.S. Medical Services said in a statement.

Today, Governor Doug Ducey announced a new executive order, in which bars, gyms, indoor movie theaters, water parks and tubing in Arizona would be forced to close for 30 days. The athletics department says they will seek guidance from state and local leadership as to whether voluntary workouts can continue.