BC Lions postpones tryouts in Texas over COVID-19 concerns
TORONTO -- The BC Lions postponed tryouts in Texas indefinitely Thursday in the wake of the growing COVID-19 outbreak.
The CFL club made the announcement on its Twitter account.
B.C. had scheduled tryout sessions in Austin on Saturday and Plano on Sunday. CFL clubs annually hold open tryouts or free-agent camps south of the border.
On Wednesday, the CFL announced its regional and national combines will go ahead as scheduled. The Ontario regional combine was being held Thursday in Toronto while the East Regional will go Friday in Baie-D'Urfe, Que.
The West Regional is scheduled for March 20 in Edmonton. The national combine is slated for Toronto on March 26-28 but the CFL said there are now new protocols for media covering those events.
“For those in attendance, officials have advised all of us to keep a safe distance while in conversation,” the CFL said in a statement. “Therefore, media availabilities will feature the use of a uni-microphone instead of traditional scrums or one-on-ones.
“As (health officials) have stressed the importance of hygiene, hand sanitizer will be available in addition to hand-washing facilities in on-site washrooms.
The CFL added, as of right now, training camps and the CFL regular season will open as scheduled.
“We are consulting other leagues, speaking with medical experts on an ongoing basis, and doing careful and responsible contingency planning,” the league said. “Based on the current information and the latest expert guidance, we're looking forward to the opening of CFL training camps in May and the start of our regular season this June.
“In the weeks ahead, the CFL will continue to update the media and public.”
This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 12, 2020.