As many college football programs around the country had already resumed voluntary workouts, some as early as June 1, the Virginia Cavaliers announced their plan on Friday morning. UVA announced both the return to grounds for the football program as well as the start of fall training camp.
UVA announced on Friday that football players will return on July 5th to begin voluntary workouts. Fall training camp will get underway on August 9th.
In May, UVA head coach Bronco Mendenhall expressed confidence late last month that football would return in the fall in some capacity.
“I think football will start in the fall,” said Mendenhall. “It’s too soon to tell whether it will start on time and what it will look like.
“And the way that I think about it simply is that football supports and enhances humanity. It’s not in place of or more important than and that’s the way that I’m going to support it and run our team and so when it’s safe and when it’s appropriate and when, when all can benefit, I’m for playing the game.
“If that’s contrary to benefiting others or the health of others, or maybe even philosophically seeming more important, then I’m not for that. So, my hope is because I believe it can help other people, my hope is that we can play it for a boost in spirit and a sense of community to rally around and then certainly, the financial component to help the athletic department and the other sports and the other coaches and the student-athletes have opportunities.”
Earlier this month, the NCAA approved a six-week plan for the ramp-up of the season.
“Assuming a first game on Sept. 5, the model begins summer access activities July 13 and adds meetings and walkthroughs on July 24,” the statement read. “Preseason practice begins August 7th.
“This is the culmination of a significant amount of collaboration in our effort to find the best solution for Division I football institutions,” Shane Lyons, chair of the committee and director of athletics at West Virginia said. “Our student-athletes, conference commissioners, coaches and health and safety professionals helped mold the model we are proposing.”
According to the statement, assuming a school’s first game is on September 5th, student athletes will have a required amount of training hours through a period in July.
“Under the proposed model, assuming a school’s first scheduled football contest is on Saturday, Sept. 5, student-athletes may be required to participate in up to eight hours of weight training, conditioning and film review per week (not more than two hours of film review per week) from July 13-23,” the statement read. “Then, from July 24 through Aug. 6, student-athletes may be required to participate in up to 20 hours of countable athletically related activities per week (not more than four hours per day) as follows: Up to eight hours per week for weight training and conditioning. Up to six hours per week for walk-throughs, which may include the use of a football. Up to six hours per week for meetings, which may include film review, team meetings, position meetings, one-on-one meetings, etc.
“During this 14-day period, student-athletes are required to get at least two days off. The model does not make any adjustments to the legislated 29-day preseason practice period. In the previous example, the school’s preseason practice period would begin Aug. 7 with a five-day acclimatization period, followed by the opportunity for up to 25 on-field practices.”