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Big 12 prohibits 'in-person' team activities through May

The Big 12 will allow two hours of “virtual” contact or group team activities a week, which includes film study, technical discussions and tactical sessions.

AUSTIN, Texas — Editor's note: The video above was published earlier in March when the Big 12 canceled its spring sports seasons.

The Big 12 Conference announced March 29 it would not allow schools to hold in-person team activities through the end of May. 

However, the conference will allow two hours of “virtual” contact or group team activities a week, which includes film study, technical discussions and tactical sessions.

This comes after a four-hour window on March 12 that saw almost every major professional sports league suspend or delay its season and the NCAA cancel each of its remaining winter and spring championships. On March 13, the Big 12 announced it would be canceling athletic competition through the end of the academic year

Additionally, the Big 12 Conference announced that all organized team activities whether organized or voluntary, including team and individual practices, meetings and other organized gatherings, were suspended until March 29 and would be re-evaluated at that time. 

As of March 29, the updated Big 12 policy included all of the following: 

  • No organized, in-person team activities of any type, in any location.
  • No in-person, voluntary workouts, film study sessions, meetings, technique drills or captains’ practices/OTA sessions of any type, in any location until a permissible date is established by the NCAA.
  • Virtual or on-line supervised physical workouts and skill instruction, regardless of location, are not permitted. 
  • All “virtual” group activities, including film study, are limited to two hours per week in all sports.  Only countable coaches may conduct virtual film study, technical discussions, tactical sessions and other non-physical activities. These policies will be revisited and adjusted at regular intervals and as circumstances dictate.
  • Coaches can recommend written, self-directed workout plans provided they are approved in accordance with proper procedures as outlined by each institution’s appropriate sport performance, medical and/or athletic training personnel (and in accordance with the NCAA Recommendations on Preventing Catastrophic Injury and Death). Taped demonstration videos on respective workout plans are allowed in order to demonstrate proper form and technique. Institutional personnel may not supervise, conduct or monitor workouts on or off campus.
  • In-person, on-campus meals and nutritional supplements may be provided in situations where student-athletes are unable to leave campus.  Off-campus nutritional supplements are limited to the permissible items as outlined in NCAA Bylaw 16.5.2.8. 
  • It is fully permissible to provide non-athletically-related support to student-athletes including:
    • sports medicine treatments, physical therapy and rehabilitation
    • academic support
    • mental health and wellness support
  • It is permissible for institutions to provide off-campus student-athletes with apparel and personal equipment that is regularly available to student-athletes when they are on campus for conditioning workouts. The provision of other equipment is not to extend to rental, purchase or arrangement of conditioning or strength training equipment or machines (e.g. stationary bicycles, treadmills, free weights, benches or weight machines) but is intended to allow for reasonable supplies such as stretching band/straps, foam rollers, etc.
  • Prospective student-athletes may not be involved in any capacity in any countable activities, including virtual activities.
  • The Big 12 Conference Board and Directors of Athletics will convene regularly to assess changing circumstances and to make shared decisions regarding amendments to the above-listed policies. The policies noted will commence at 7 a.m. CDT, Monday, March 30, 2020, and remain in effect until May 31, 2020, or until additional guidance is provided.
  • Decisions on the structure, schedule and components of training during the post-pandemic period will be made as circumstances dictate.

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