Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, sounded an alarm on the future of professional sports amid the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a report that aired on CNN Thursday morning.
Shortly after speaking with Fauci, CNN’s Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta reported that Fauci finds it difficult to imagine how football season would proceed as usual later this year.
According to Gupta, Fauci told him that “unless players are essentially in a bubble,” meaning that they are isolated from the community and are tested nearly every day, he finds it “very hard to see how football is able to be played this fall.”
“If there is a second wave, which is certainly a possibility and which would be complicated by the predictable flu season, football may not happen this year,” Fauci said, according to Gupta.
Earlier this month, Fauci claimed that his meetings with President Trump have “dramatically decreased” amid the COVID-19 pandemic. On Tuesday, Fauci dismissed the idea of attending Trump’s campaign rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma this weekend, saying that “personally, I would not” due to being in a “high risk” category for contracting the novel coronavirus.
Fauci’s remarks come a day after the NCAA approved a plan for summer athletic activities and preseason practice for the upcoming 2020 college football season starting in late August.
On Monday, the NFL Network reported that several Dallas Cowboys and Houston Texans players tested positive for the novel coronavirus.
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell told ESPN on Monday he expects more positive tests among football players.
“That is part of the increased testing that we will be going through and that is something that we just want to make sure that our protocols are working and to date,” Goodell. “We are seeing very positive reactions in the sense that we are making sure we respond quickly, protect the personnel that may be impacted by that and others that may be in contact with them.”