It was late June, two days before a college football player left home for school and voluntary workouts, when he got a group text message from a teammate who also is his roommate.
He’d just found out he had tested positive for COVID-19.
Had the teammate not disclosed the news, the football player said, he might not have found another place to live while the teammate was infectious and in isolation.
The football coaches, medical staff and athletic director at the school never informed him his teammate had tested positive, said the football player, who spoke to USA TODAY on condition of anonymity and requested the name of the Division I school not be disclosed because he fears reprisal.
While college football players are routinely exposed to serious injury, this year many of them were exposed to COVID-19 more than two months before the general student body was scheduled to return to campus during the coronavirus pandemic. The football player who spoke to USA TODAY said he has sickle cell anemia and worries about research that indicates he and other Black people are at greater risk for getting infected.
You can probably predict the punchline.
The college football player who spoke on the condition of anonymity said the school for which he plays required him to sign a document before he could begin voluntary workouts. According to a copy of the document viewed by USA TODAY, it states in part that the signee understands he may be at higher risk for exposure to COVID-19 because playing football involves close contact with others.
Somebody needs to out these fuckers. Period.