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Boise State announces new positive COVID-19 cases as Broncos prepare for season opener

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Posted at 3:15 PM, Oct 07, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-07 17:15:42-04

BOISE, Idaho — This was written by Ron Counts of the Idaho Statesman.

The Boise State athletic department has conducted 400 COVID-19 tests among athletes, coaches and staff members and added 29 positive cases since its last testing update on Sept. 15, according to the university.

Since early June, the department has conducted 1,592 tests and discovered 77 positive cases. Boise State announced 48 positive cases on Sept. 15.

The department’s rate of positive cases is on the rise as the Broncos prepare for their football season opener Oct. 24 against Utah State. In early July, Boise State announced it had conducted 533 tests with 22 positives (4.1%). The latest numbers show the positivity rate at 7.3%.

Athletes began returning to campus for voluntary workouts during the first week of June, and less than a week later, the university announced multiple athletes tested positive for the virus but declined to identify them or the sport they played.

Football players began 12 hours a week of workouts in late July, but since fall practice began on Sept. 26, they’re allowed to take part in organized team activities for up to 20 hours a week.

In late August, Boise State announced it planned to test at least 200 athletes a week, and on Sept. 1, the university said it had tested more than 600 members of the athletic department with 41 positive cases since June.

Testing will become more frequent in the coming weeks thanks to Mountain West protocols, which require players, coaches and trainers to be tested three times a week during the season.