Pac-12 Votes to Resume Football, Basketball and Winter Sports Seasons
STATEMENT FROM USC WOMEN'S BASKETBALL HEAD COACH MARK TRAKH:
"We are very excited about the recent news that we will begin our season on November 25. Our women are now starting to prepare for what figures to be an interesting season, after a seven-month hiatus. We are so appreciative of all the hard work and collaboration between the conference, our athletic departments, our universities and our counties and states to support a safe return to play. We are all looking forward to taking the court!"
STATEMENT FROM USC ATHLETIC DIRECTOR MIKE BOHN:
"I am thrilled for our student-athletes, coaches, and fans that the Pac-12 Conference presidents and chancellors voted to resume athletics practices and competitions for football, basketball, and winter sports seasons.
"When contact practices and competitions were postponed six weeks ago, our conference's medical experts outlined conditions that had to be met in order to revisit that decision. Specifically, there needed to be:
(i) reductions in community prevalence in many of our communities,
(ii) advances in testing speed and capacity across the entire conference, and
(iii) additional time to further study and understand the health impacts of the virus.
"Guided by the Pac-12's breakthrough daily testing partnership with Quidel, the Pac-12's COVID-19 Medical Advisory Committee determined that these criteria have been met, and we can now resume contact practices and competitions. USC's own medical experts thoroughly reviewed and fully endorsed the recommendations of the conference's Medical Advisory Committee. I want to thank all our medical experts for their continued and unwavering commitment to upholding the highest health and safety standard in all of college athletics.
"We are proud of our student-athletes who made this resumption possible by their adherence to our health and safety protocols. We are inspired by their commitment to themselves, their teammates, and our protocols. As we have been these past several weeks, we will move forward with great caution and care for our student-athletes. Any student-athlete who chooses not to participate in competition due to COVID-related concerns will not be pressured in any way or suffer any reductions in financial aid.
"It is a testament to the strength of the leadership in our football locker room and a symbol of the central role USC plays in the Pac-12 that the letter from our players to California Governor Gavin Newsom galvanized our collective return to play efforts. We are appreciative of the leadership of the state of California for working with us and committing to revisions to public health guidelines that will allow us to practice and play safely and in competitive balance with our conference and national peers."