Colleges already showing they can’t keep athletes safe on campus

Universities across the country are struggling to give athletes a safe environment on campus.

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Sports

June 24, 2020 - 10:08 AM

Joe Burrow #9 of the LSU Tigers talks with Trevor Lawrence #16 of the Clemson Tigers after their 42-25 win over Clemson Tigers in the College Football Playoff National Championship game at Mercedes Benz Superdome on January 13, 2020 in New Orleans, Louisiana. Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images/TNS

There’s tension between my view that it’s wrong for colleges to ask unpaid athletes to take the field during the novel coronavirus pandemic and my anxiety about what fewer football games means for a sportswriter in SEC country. For Zachary Binney, an epidemiologist at Oxford College of Emory University, the quandary is squaring his love of sports with his expert opinion that it may be too risky for games to be played.

“I do wear two hats, sports fan and public-health professional,” Binney said Tuesday. “I was always an epidemiologist focused on sports. I never in a million years foresaw them colliding in this way.

“It’s a struggle wanting sports to come back and recognizing what the risks are, and feeling compelled as a public-health professional to go against my interests as a sports fan.”

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