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Mendenhall addresses changes in COVID-19 protocols

Bronco Mendenhall
Bronco Mendenhall. Photo courtesy Atlantic Coast Conference.

The issues that Virginia has experienced with COVID-19 hasn’t been players contracting the virus, but rather contact tracing.

UVA coach Bronco Mendenhall detailed Tuesday how what he and his staff have learned from contact tracers has led to massive changes in protocol across the Cavaliers football program.

“Without getting into every detail, we restructured our locker room, we restructured the number of buses we take, we restructured the number of players that we take, and the transportation method the games, the airplane seating, every possible, the way we serve meals at the hotel, increased measures for visitations everything that we possibly could consider,” Mendenhall said.

Last week, for the home game with North Carolina, Virginia didn’t have any players out due to contact tracing related to COVID-19, with one unnamed staffer out after having had a positive confirmed COVID-19 test.

The team was without four players a week earlier at Miami, one player for the road game at Miami, and seven for the N.C. State and Clemson games.

That would seem to suggest that the updated COVID-19 protocols that are now in place must be working.

“Now that we’re becoming clearer of what the contact tracers are asking, it’s allowing us more clarity on at least we can address those things,” Mendenhall said. “It took a while to know what truly they were going to ask and what really was being emphasized. I think we’ve done a really nice job with that, and I’ve addressed that in every possible way, but the primary reason, we were already I think really doing a nice job in terms of the COVID, or possibly managing COVID, if that’s even possible.

“This was really our effort once we’ve learned more about contract tracing, like, what then do we need to do,” Mendenhall said. “I think it’s been effective, not perfect. It doesn’t mean we still couldn’t test positive, or I couldn’t, or someone else, but I think within the scope of what we know, I think we’re doing well.”

Story by Chris Graham