OSU football: Mike Gundy says players return to campus June 1
STILLWATER — Oklahoma State is bringing football back as soon as possible.
OSU coaches and staff members were tested for COVID-19 on Friday and players are allowed to return to campus Monday to prepare for voluntary workouts on June 15, OSU coach Mike Gundy announced on his Twitter page Friday morning.
An OSU official said no coach or players are being forced to return to campus next week. The official also said all players who return will be brought in by groups for testing. They will then be quarantined on campus for two weeks.
After the two-week period, players can begin voluntary workouts.
Voluntary workouts are not organized team workouts, but facilities are open and players can use equipment for running, weightlifting, etc. No university staff member can lead a workout, but they can be present only for safety protocols.
June 15 is the first date the Big 12 allows voluntary football workouts as part of a phased return to activities, even though the NCAA Division I Council voted to allow voluntary workouts starting Monday.
OSU is the first Big 12 program to announce a June 15 return. Oklahoma announced a July 1 return earlier this week.
The Southeastern Conference voted to allow athletes to begin voluntary workouts on June 8, while the Big Ten elected to let individual schools set their own date.
The decision for the Cowboys comes a day after the university announced the formation of a task force of medical experts, campus leaders and athletic department officials to plan a safe return for athletes to campus.
An OSU official said that as of Friday afternoon no player had elected to not return to campus on Monday. They were all eager to get back to football.
Gundy and other OSU coaches have long itched to get back to preparing for the fall season.
On April 7, Gundy held an hour-long conference call in which he expressed hope to bring coaches and staff members back to campus on May 1. His controversial comments drew national attention, leading to Gundy apologizing days later.
But Gundy never wavered on his belief that football would return in the fall.
Now, the Cowboys are taking the first step to making that a reality.
“I think we’re all going to be playing football,” Gundy said in April. “I think everybody needs to just continue to do what the medical community asks us, continue to work to try to keep people healthy and I think we just need to relax.”