By Kaia Zimmerman
Grand Rapids Community College is partnering with Ferris State University to keep athletes safe by administering a weekly COVID-19 test for all contact sports athletes.
GRCC administrators say they are committed to ensuring the safety of the athletes and they’re going beyond the safety protocols prescribed by the National Junior College Association and Michigan Community College Athletic Association to prove it.
“We’ve adopted several protocols to keep our student-athletes as safe as possible during the pandemic,” Interim Athletic Director David Selmon said in a press release. “This is an additional step, but we think it is an important one for teams competing in contact sports. Ferris has been an excellent partner for GRCC over the years, and we appreciate being able to work together on the testing.”
GRCC women’s basketball coach David Glazier said he has done the test, and thinks it is an important initiative to keep athletes safe. “I’m excited that there is continued support and focus on the safety of our kids,” Glazier said.
The partnership with Ferris College of Pharmacy will include testing for all students, coaching staff and training staff participating in contact sports. The weekly testing is set to remain until the end of the season.
The test the student-athletes will be receiving is a weekly antigen test that involves two nasal swabs, and they will receive the results in 15 minutes.
“It’s not that bad,” said sophomore basketball player Richard Major in a press release. “It’s something we need to do to be able to play safely. It will help us stay on the court and get the season in.”
As well as weekly testing, basketball players are required to wear masks while playing, no spectators are allowed, and all seats on the bench are six feet apart to ensure the safety of the athletes.
Both GRCC basketball teams will be playing at the Ford Fieldhouse this Friday, Feb. 26 to face Mid Michigan College. You can watch the game on GRCC’s YouTube channel.