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Houston hits the pause button on voluntary workouts ‘after six symptomatic UH student-athletes tested positive for COVID-19'

Houston football specifically and UH athletics in general are officially involved in a first for collegiate sports at this level. Whether they will be the last remains to be seen. Although they likely won’t if we’re all being honest.

June 1, student-athletes at Houston, including Cougars football players, began returning to campus to start voluntary workouts. While the vast majority of universities subjected its returning athletes to COVID-19 testing, Houston was one of the scant few that did not.

Friday, not coincidentally, UH announced that it has suspended all voluntary workouts involving student-athletes. Effective immediately. Why? Because “six symptomatic UH student-athletes tested positive for COVID-19.” The school also cited “the increase in the number of positive tests in the greater Houston area over the last week.”

From the university’s release:

The impacted students have been placed in isolation and contact tracing procedures have been initiated following protocol.

As was contemplated prior to the return of student-athletes on June 1, UH Athletics is adapting its protocols to include repetitive COVID-19 testing as a component of any resumption of workouts on campus.

During this pause in voluntary workouts, UH Athletics will continue its stringent cleaning and sanitization protocols in all facilities.

UH Athletics will continue to partner with university officials, UH team physicians and local health professionals to determine best practices as it considers a return to workouts.

Earlier this week, it was reported that another three Alabama football players had tested positive for COVID-19. That brought the total to at least eight Crimson Tide football players who have tested positive. As of yet, UA has not suspended its voluntary workouts. Or even acknowledged any positive tests, come to think of it.