Virginia Tech fall camp first practice

Virginia Tech football coach Justin Fuente (center) works with the Hokies’ offensive linemen during Friday’s practice.

Virginia Tech football team continues to work through the issues surrounding the ACC’s decision to suspend athletic-related events in the wake of the nationwide coronavirus outbreak.

On Thursday, the conference announced it was suspending, “all athletic related activities including all competition, formal and organized practice, recruiting and participation in NCAA championships until further notice.”

Tech’s priority on Thursday was addressing logistical concerns for the teams in active competition. The Hokies baseball, softball and lacrosse teams all played games on Wednesday. The lacrosse team played a non-conference game against Brown in Providence, Rhode Island.

The football team had their first spring practice scheduled for March 21, but its now in a holding pattern. The status of the Hokies' annual spring game — it was scheduled for April 18 at Lane Stadium — is also up in the air. A team spokesperson declined comment about the spring game. 

It wasn’t immediately clear on Thursday what the next step for the football team would be. Players were expected to be back on campus for a team meeting on Sunday before the university extended its spring break.

Tech’s coaching staff has been in communication with players to update them on the latest developments.

As long as the university keeps the residence and dining halls open, student-athletes would be allowed to return to campus and workout on their own, but those issues were still being discussed by university officials on Thursday. 

Virginia Tech athletics has worked to keep its facilities safe for student use with a series of preventative measures recommended by the department's chief medical officer, Dr. Mark Rodgers. The department is cleaning and disinfecting exposed services, providing hand sanitizer stations throughout the facility and posting reminders for student-athletes on best practices. 

The university has established a COVID-19 task force that will continue to meet on a daily basis. 

Mike Niziolek is the Virginia Tech football beat writer for The Roanoke Times. Follow him on Facebook and Twitter.

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