In a year filled with bad news, Kansas State’s football program had some good news for a change Tuesday. Head coach Chris Klieman announced his team didn’t have a single positive coronavirus test prior to beginning preseason camp Friday.
“We did not have any last week before we started camp,” Klieman said during a video conference with reporters.
Klieman said the entire team will be tested again Wednesday.
“We did it — I can’t remember, nine (or) 10 days ago, something like that — and we didn’t have any positive tests, which told us the protocols in place here are extremely, extremely good,” Klieman said. “And then from here on out, it’s going to be (testing) every Wednesday.”
The Wildcats started voluntary workouts June 15 but halted them five days later after 14 players had tested positive. K-State Athletics hasn’t released an update on testing numbers since July 14. That day, the athletics department announced 29 student-athletes had tested positive for COVID-19 following PCR (polymerase chain reaction) testing of 190 student-athletes; testing began in early June
With the announcement that it will proceed with football in the fall, the Big 12 is mandating all programs administer three COVID-19 tests per week during the season.
Should an athlete test positive, that player will have to undergo a series of tests, including an EKG, troponin blood test, echocardiogram and a cardiac MRI. All non-conference opponents are also required to follow the guidelines.
“The virus continues to evolve, and medical professionals are learning more with each passing week,” Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby said in a statement. “Opinions vary regarding the best path forward ... but we are comfortable in our institutions’ ability to provide a structured training environment, rigorous testing and surveillance, hospital quality sanitation and mitigation practices that optimize the health and safety of our student-athletes.”