BYU AD Tom Holmoe Gives Cougar Fans ‘Message Of Hope’ During Coronavirus Outbreak

Mar 17, 2020, 11:16 AM | Updated: 11:42 am
BYU Athletic Director Tom Holmoe...
BYU athletic director Tom Holmoe meets with reporters for his semiannual media Q&A roundtable in Provo on Wednesday, Jan. 24, 2018. (Photo Courtesy of BYU Photo)
(Photo Courtesy of BYU Photo)

SALT LAKE CITY – BYU Athletic Director Tom Holmoe put out a video for fans of Cougar sports on Tuesday during the uncharted times of suspended athletics during the Coronavirus outbreak.

“Hello Cougar Nation, as all of us engage in the work of assuring the health and well being of our families, friends, and neighbors, as well as carefully monitoring information to stay ahead of the coronavirus. I felt it important to reach out to you with an update as well as a message of hope,” said Holmoe. “The dramatic series of events surrounding the expansion of the virus across the globe and in our communities has made us all pause and reflect on the order of priorities in our lives.”

Tom Holmoe gives update on communication with BYU coaches and athletes

All BYU students will be completing the winter semester remotely as they were advised to go back to their homes to prevent the potential spread of the Coronavirus on campus.

“The past few days I’ve had the chance incredible experience of communicating with BYU coaches and athletic staff, and many of our amazing student-athletes, the vast majority of them are well, they are resilient and able to adapt to the changes around them. They are already looking ahead to resuming where they left off on the road to achieving their longtime goals and dreams. Their initial sadness of the news of the abrupt stoppage of their seasons subsided quickly as they learned of the benefits of their sacrifice for the betterment and safety of our communities. Social distancing to flatten the curve became their new reality, at least for their immediate futures.”

When students return to take classes on campus will await further instruction from BYU’s Board of Trustees.

Eligibility relief for NCAA winter athletes?

With the Coronavirus outbreak, one of the growing debates in college sports is whether or not the NCAA will give eligibility relief to athletes participating in winter sports. Spring sports have already received relief, but winter is an ongoing discussion.

“There has been much discussion about making things right for those athletes that were not able to complete their season,” said Holmoe. “This includes the NCAA announcing it would grant eligibility relief for student-athletes who participated in spring sports and review similar opportunities for those who competed in winter sports who are unable to participate in conference or NCAA championships. In the coming weeks, we will learn more about these possibilities and share them with you as we can.”

BYU fans will receive refunds on tickets purchased

All NCAA spring sporting events have been canceled which would include BYU Men’s Volleyball, baseball, softball, and others. BYU intends to refund all the purchases for tickets to those home events to Cougar fans.

“BYU athletics is prepared to make good on the tickets that were purchased to home events that have been canceled,” Tom Holmoe said.

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How Do I Prevent It?

The CDC has some simple recommendations, most of which are the same for preventing other respiratory illnesses or the flu:

  • Avoid close contact with people who may be sick
  • Avoid touching your face
  • Stay home when you are sick
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue and then throw the tissue in the trash
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom, before eating, and after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing. Always wash your hands with soap and water if your hands are visibly dirty.
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.

The CDC does not recommend wearing a facemask respirator to protect yourself from coronavirus unless a healthcare professional recommends it.

Mitch Harper is a BYU Insider for and host of the Cougar Tracks Podcast (SUBSCRIBE) and Cougar Sports Saturday (Saturday from 12-3 pm) on KSL Newsradio. Follow him on Twitter: @Mitch_Harper.

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