COVID-19 doesn’t seem to be a problem in Texas.
If the people who run the college sports industry really wanted to make a statement about public health, they have the opportunity. The National Collegiate Athletic Association’s Women’s College Basketball Tournament would be uprooted from San Antonio, San Marcos and Austin, Texas. Texas Governor Greg Abbott, who is a lawyer by trade, has decided he knows better than scientists and infectious disease control experts and has lifted the state’s COVID-19 related mask requirement and has fully opened businesses because the pandemic is not a Texas problem. The people who are in charge of the safety and health of college students or the “student-athletes” are going to put the “student-athletes” in harm’s way again because the poohbahs who run the college sports industry like the TV money which flows into the industry and probably like the fact that live bodies can fill some seats.
Abbott is preening Texas is 100-percent open and there are COVID-19 vaccines. But COVID-19 is not listening to the governor. As Abbott was dropping the mandate and opening business, the number of coronavirus cases and deaths due to the illness caused by the virus were rising in Texas, according to data from Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. The NCAA announced that the planned protocols will require masking and social distancing for the tournament’s official travel parties, guests and fans. How the NCAA will enforce that away from the arenas is questionable because Texas is wide open. There will be 64 college women’s basketball teams in the San Antonio, San Marcos and Austin area beginning around March 19th or 20th. The NCAA will also have another 16 men’s teams playing near Dallas, Texas in the National Invitational Tournament. The NCAA claims protecting the health and safety of everyone in Texas is its priority, not money.
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