UNCW men’s basketball team takes steps to prevent COVID-19 spread

UNCW men's basketball team prepares for season

WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) - The UNCW men’s basketball team held a virtual media day over Zoom on Thursday morning.

The event is typically at Trask Coliseum but moved to Zoom because of COVID-19 concerns.

UNCW first-year head coach Takayo Siddle says that the coronavirus is something the coaching staff talks to the players about daily.

“We talk to our guys about that a lot,” said Siddle. “We are making sure that they are wearing their masks all the time. We’re making sure they’re staying clean, washing their hands and showering all the time, and disinfecting the locker room. We are doing our part on our end as a coaching staff and as a university. And, they have to take ownership in it—and I think for the most part they have.”

Players believe the decisions they make will determine whether they have a season or not.

“I hope we play,” said guard Mike Okauru. “We are just taking it day by day.”

COVID-19 concerns grew on campus after players from men’s soccer and softball, and women’s basketball all tested positive for the virus.

“We feel bad for those other programs,” said forward Ian Steere. “It also puts it in perspective that we have to be safe. You never know, it could happen to us, so you have to go that extra mile to stay safe.”

Because the team isn’t playing games, they are not being tested regularly but are getting ready for what will happen once the season starts on November 25.

“We’re starting to get some consistency with what we’re hearing in terms of how many times we’re going to get tested during the week and what that’s going to look like,” said Siddle. “So, the next couple of weeks we’ll have a solid protocol on what we will be following. I talk to my guys a lot about it.”

The Seahawks will open official practices on October 14.

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