Southeastern Conference officials will vote on May 22 whether student-athletes can return to campus in June, according to several reports.
LSU executive deputy athletic director Verge Ausberry said in a Thursday video conference with the Louisiana Economic Task Force that the vote will be to bring back students on June 1 or June 15, the Baton Rouge-Advocate reported. Missouri athletic director Jim Sterk also acknowledged a vote is coming in a Thursday video conference with local media, according to the St. Louis Dispatch.
In mid-March, the SEC suspended all athletic activities through April 15 because of the coronavirus. The conference later extended the suspension through May 31.
SEC commissioner Greg Sankey wouldn’t confirm the May 22 vote but told ESPN the conference has to make a decision prior to May 31.
“Those who suggest that [a vote is happening on] this particular date or that particular date miss that we’re meeting regularly with our membership to make decisions,” Sankey told ESPN. “That’s the timeline. On any occasion we meet, certain decisions can be made.”
The SEC presidents have a weekly conference call with the next one scheduled for Friday followed by another on May 22.
June 1 has been a target date for student-athletes to return to campus by several SEC officials in recent weeks. Arkansas athletic director Hunter Yurachek told the school’s board of trustees plans were in the works to have the weight room and training room ready on June 1 for voluntary workouts for athletes. Missouri’s athletic department resumed operations last week and the school was planning for athletes to return June 1. Yurachek stressed it was just a plan.
A&M athletic director Ross Bjork said in a teleconference last week that he would rather the school’s athletes use their facilities instead of going to a private gym. Bjork said that before Texas Gov. Greg Abbott announced gyms would be allowed to reopen later this month.
Texas will reopen its gyms Monday, following the governor’s guidelines.