The Latest: LSU coach says school doing well against virus

first_imgHe said the team is trying to “make sure our players and our staff understand that we’ve got three months here where we cannot go outside for social reasons or to eat or anything else if we want to have our football season.”___The Southeastern Conference will prohibit “suite hopping” as part of COVID-19 guidelines designed for fan safety and health in preparation for conference-only play this season.Decisions on whether fans can attend games will be made closer to Sept. 26 when the league begins play. Attendance numbers will be left to member schools but must follow state and local guidelines. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommendations should be followed in the absence of those measures.Furniture in premium seating and clubs shall be arranged to promote physical distancing, the guidelines add. Physical distancing and face coverings will also be stressed there as well as in public areas, including concessions, where barriers must be installed. The SEC guidelines also suggest “grab and go” food options, with drinks provided directly to spectators and single-serve condiments offered. ___The Chiefs will allow up to 2,000 season ticket holders to attend training camp on Saturday, making them the first NFL team to allow fans since the coronavirus pandemic dramatically altered the way teams are preparing for the season.The team also said that up to 5,000 season ticket holders will be allowed at practice on Aug. 29, when the franchise plans to raise a new Super Bowl championship flag over the west end zone.The Chiefs typically draw thousands of fans daily to training camp on the campus of Missouri Western State University, about an hour’s drive north of Kansas City in St. Joseph, Missouri. But the pandemic caused the Chiefs and the few other teams that still leave home for training camp to instead hold all their workouts at team facilities.The Chiefs are fortunate in that their practice facility is just across the parking lot from Arrowhead Stadium. They have been using both locations to allow for more social distancing in walk-throughs and meetings. The practices that are open to fans will be at Arrowhead Stadium, where they will be able to social distance. SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey said its 14 schools adopted the fan guidelines as a baseline and added, “They provide conference-wide expectations for protection of guests who are able to attend our games.”___The Tennessee Titans won’t have fans at their home opener on Sept. 20 against Jacksonville because of the coronavirus pandemic.Nashville Mayor John Cooper and the Titans announced the decision Tuesday. Nashville’s Major League Soccer team also won’t have any fans at home games in September.Burke Nihill, the Titans’ president and CEO, says they wish they could open in front of fans as a franchise coming off its first AFC championship game in 17 years. But he says the Titans support the mayor and the local health department’s decision to keep Nissan Stadium closed to fans at least to start the season. The New England Patriots will be playing without fans in Gillette Stadium at least through September. Stadium officials said in a statement on Tuesday that the state will not allow fans at any event next month. That includes the Patriots’ games on Sept. 13 against the Miami Dolphins and the one two weeks later against the Raiders.While saying that they “fully support” the state’s position, stadium officials also said they “would have welcomed the opportunity to host fans in August and September, but are hopeful to do so later in the season.”The Patriots had previously announced a plan that would have limited Gillette Stadium to about 20% of its 66,000 person capacity. Officials said they worked with experts to develop a plan to reopen at partial capacity and “are confident in our ability to provide a safe and comfortable environment for fans.”According to the Massachusetts reopening plan, sporting events with fans will not be allowed until the state reaches Phase 4, which requires a vaccine or treatment for COVID-19. ___North Carolina coach Mack Brown said he remains “confident” that the Tar Heels will play football this season after the school shut down in-person undergraduate classes.Brown said Tuesday that the school’s move to online courses after recent coronavirus clusters in student housing and a fraternity could ultimately help “create a better seal around our program and a better bubble.”Brown said team staffers hosted a Zoom call for parents on Monday to address questions. Athletes can choose to remain in current residences, while some football players have previously chosen to opt out of the upcoming season.Brown said many players were already taking online courses and that the team will continue once-weekly testing of players for the coronavirus. ___Two players from Roma’s youth team have tested positive for the coronavirus.The Italian soccer club has not named the players but says they are asymptomatic and have begun self-isolating.Roma says “those who have come into contact with the two individuals have been traced and notified” and adds that “a deep clean and disinfection of the club’s training facilities has also already begun.”The two players, their teammates and the youth team staff will undergo further tests. The Latest: LSU coach says school doing well against virus August 18, 2020 Contact tracing has started to see who might have been exposed to that person and should quarantine for two weeks.The Western & Southern Open, moved this year from Cincinnati to New York because of the coronavirus pandemic, begins Saturday. The U.S. Open starts Aug. 31.Testing began last Thursday.___South Africa has withdrawn from a planned women’s cricket tour of England because of coronavirus-related restrictions.center_img Orgeron said during a video conference Tuesday that the team had “two or three guys that are out” because of positive tests. He did not specify which players had tested positive.Orgeron says LSU administrators overseeing coronavirus protocols, led by Senior Associate Athletic Director of Health and Wellness Shelly Mullenix, have done a “tremendous job.“We’re ahead (of) most programs,” Orgeron said. “Our players feel comfortable that they’re getting proper care.”August camp formally opened on Monday and LSU has had two players opt out because of coronavirus concerns, senior cornerback Kary Vincent Jr. and senior defensive end Neil Farrell Jr.___ The England and Wales Cricket Board and Cricket South Africa say “this decision was taken due to the current international travel regulations in place for South African national teams.”South Africa had been scheduled to travel next month and play using the same bubble-style protocol used for men’s tours of England by West Indies, Ireland and Pakistan.The announcement leaves the England women’s team without any confirmed matches for the rest of the year after a planned tour by India was called off last month. The England women’s team has not had a game since the T20 World Cup in Australia in February and March.The ECB says it is in “multiple discussions” to host international women’s cricket tours.It’s the third women’s series to be canceled this year for South Africa following a planned series against Australia in South Africa and a tour of the West Indies. Share This StoryFacebookTwitteremailPrintLinkedinRedditThe Latest on the effects of the coronavirus outbreak on sports around the world:___LSU coach Ed Orgeron says the defending national champion Tigers have had “very few” players test positive for COVID-19. The Titans play only one home game in September. Team officials have been working with public health experts to design a stadium plan in the hopes that fans will be able to attend some of the eight scheduled home games this season. Those precautions include mandatory masks, socially distant seating, contactless faucets and hand sanitizer stations throughout the stadium.Nashville’s MLS team has three games scheduled through Sept. 12 at Nissan Stadium. Nashville SC set a record for the largest soccer crowd in Tennessee with its MLS debut on Feb. 29 as fans packed Nissan Stadium.___One person who isn’t a player returned a positive result for COVID-19 out of 1,400 tests administered in the controlled environment set up for the U.S. Open and another tennis tournament preceding it at the same site in New York.The U.S. Tennis Association said Tuesday that the person is asymptomatic and must isolate for at least 10 days. Associated Press The team’s training activities have been suspended until at least Aug. 24.___German soccer club Union Berlin wants to hold a pre-season friendly match with 3,000 spectators and is hoping that “preventative” coronavirus tests for fans will allow it to happen.The Bundesliga club says it has applied to the local Treptow-Köpenick health authorities for permission to hold the game with an altered hygiene plan on Sept. 5.Union says “a preventative test for all spectators is intended to replace the currently valid social distancing rules.” German soccer clubs previously outlined plans to resume games with some socially distanced fans attending in seated areas. Union’s Stadion An der Alten Försterei has mostly standing terraces so it could have far fewer fans attending than its competitors.___More AP sports: and read more

Against all odds, Minnesotans will again enjoy outdoor baseball

first_imgInside a small apartment, tucked away in the second drawer of an IKEA-engineered dresser, there is a 30-year-old T-shirt with three screen-printed words: “Save the Met.” The shirt, which is vaguely the same color as bare skin or off-brand peanut butter, is as unremarkable as it is ugly, but to a Minnesota baseball fan, it might as well be the Shroud of Turin.For the faithful, it represents tangible evidence of outdoor baseball’s existence in the land of the ice and snow — a land that for the past 28 years has been dominated by the world’s least interesting inflatable castle. It also represents nostalgia, where in the dark years of Scott Stahoviak and Ron Coomer, one could revisit the hagiographies of Killebrew and Carew.But it may finally be time to bury those memories — and that shirt — next to the North Stars and Kevin Garnett. We are all about to bear witness to the second coming.On March 27, 2010, the Minnesota Twins’ Target Field will finally open its doors to baseball.The inaugural game, which pits the University of Minnesota against Louisiana Tech (a Big Ten school with a baseball team? That’s weird) will be of little consequence, but the symbolism will be monumental. For over three years, we’ve watched the building site like gawkers in front of the Wonka Factory, hunting for unlocked gates or napping security guards.Sure, naming a stadium after a retail chain doesn’t exactly inspire the same enthusiasm as one named after a beer or a bailed-out financial institution, but at least Target is still run by Americans. Just wait until they start playing cricket at Miller Park.Ultimately, the need to follow the stadium came from the bewilderment that it was actually being built. For years, the Twins complained about their need for a new ballpark, and for years, the state legislature ignored them. Even in the face of Commissioner Bud Selig’s contraction threats, there was little push to get something done.And yet here we are, amid a massive recession, substantial unemployment and failing inner-city schools, ready to cut the ribbon to a taxpayer-funded ballpark. It’s not right. It’s indicative of a society’s downfall, where McDonald’s salads are health food and affordable medicine is communist.And we couldn’t be happier.At least most of us couldn’t be happier. As Lincoln said, “You can please some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but only if you wear a really big hat.” This is, after all, why Lincoln wore a really big hat. It’s also why John Wilkes Booth hated him.But Target Field won’t be sporting a really big hat — or, as architects like to call it, a roof — so it goes without saying that not everyone is pleased. However, for every pseudo-northerner who relies on retractable roofs, winter jackets and heating bills to stay comfortable, there’s a Metropolitan Stadium disciple willing to spread the truth regarding average monthly temperatures in the United States.There are at least seven major league baseball cities (and eight teams) with an average aggregate April temperature between 45 and 50 degrees Fahrenheit: Minneapolis, Milwaukee, Chicago, Detroit, Cleveland, Pittsburgh and Boston — it’s possible that Cincinnati’s in there, too, although apparently the NOAA doesn’t feel the Queen City deserves mention in their giant graph, and it’s hard to blame them.As of today, only one of those eight teams plays in a roofed stadium. The world has not ended. And no matter what Pat Robertson says, Target Field will not spur on the apocalypse.Of course, nothing silences tax dollar and temperature grumblings more effectively than July baseball under something that’s not Teflon or steel. We may miss the cheap tickets, the rowdy student nights, the noise and the wind tunnel exits, but we won’t miss facing the 50-yard line, the sea of blue seats, the bathroom troughs or Butch Huskey.Well, we might actually miss Butch Huskey.Time heals most non-life threatening wounds, and nostalgia works in cycles. People actually like “Don’t Stop Believing” now. And despite what the introduction tried to convey, it’s not like many people actually miss the Met. It was falling apart; the third deck of the stadium was condemned by the late 1970’s. It wasn’t about saving Metropolitan Stadium — it was about saving outdoor baseball.Now if only we could swap the Wild for the Stars.Sean is a senior majoring in journalism and Minnesota history. Are you excited to attend a baseball game outdoors in the Land of 10,000 lakes? Or did you prefer the turf and inflatable nature of the Dome? Let him know at read more