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Epidemiologist talks about measures that should take place before colleges can resume classes, and football

Jesse Reed
© Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

In the college football community, the biggest thing everyone is talking about right now is what needs to happen for games to be played this fall. On Wednesday, infectious disease specialist and epidemiologist Dr. Michael Saag appeared on Paul Finebaum’s ESPN Radio segment and shared his thoughts on all of this.

Three steps: Epidemiologist shares how colleges can resume classes

One of the big things that must happen if college football is to happen is that classes must be in session on campus. This is something major conference commissioners shared with Vice President Mike Pence recently. So getting students back on campus is a major hurdle to overcome.

Speaking with Finebaum, Dr. Saag provided a three-step plan — and it’s one you’ve likely seen before:

  • Aggressive testing
  • Isolation
  • Case-contact tracing

“That is our hope to manage this thing until we get a treatment or vaccine,” Dr. Saag said.

We already know that many schools plan on opening up for classes this fall. What we don’t know is whether the schools that are planning to open up have the resources or plan to follow these steps.

Other schools have already canceled in-person classes for the fall semester — an entirely different can of worms altogether.

Testing college football players is a must

A bit further into his time with Finebaum, Dr. Saag shared a suggestion about how schools should approach testing for college football players. His idea is that players be tested the day before games. Those who test positive won’t play.

These suggestions are in line with what Dr. Anthony Fauci — the nation’s leading infectious disease expert — has said about how to resume sports in America. Time will tell if they are implemented, and if they will be enough to mitigate the further spread of COVID-19.