We’re getting very, very close to the start of the 2021 sports season and many schools are making final preparations for the new school year. For the Notre Dame Fighting Irish and their various sports teams, that means a big change for media members.
According to Brett McMurphy of Stadium, Notre Dame has announced that anyone covering practices, press conferences or games must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. The announcement comes as other schools and conferences release similar restrictions on media members for the upcoming sports year.
Last school year nearly all media events were held virtually via Zoom, Skype or other video services. But at that time, the vaccine was either not available or not yet as widely available.
Heading into the start of the 2021-22 sports season though, the excuses are gone. The United States has fully vaccinated over 48-percent of the population as of this week.
Notre Dame announces if you plan to cover the Fighting Irish (in any sport) during practice, press conferences or games at Notre Dame – you must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19
— Brett McMurphy (@Brett_McMurphy) July 14, 2021
Hundreds of college sports games across the country were cancelled last school year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Notre Dame alone was forced to cancel over a dozen games between its football and basketball teams alone.
So it should come as no surprise that Notre Dame is erring on the side of caution.
While there will no doubt be objections to the policy for a litany of reasons, doing this gives them better chance that the season goes off without a hitch now.
Will Notre Dame avoid canceling any games this year?