Fans allowed in athletic stadiums for 2021-2022 games

After one year of empty stands, fans will return to athletics games this fall, according to athletic director Edward Scott.

Morgan+State+Universitys+Hughes+Football+Stadium+will+allow+fans+for+the+2021-2022+season.

Wyman Jones

Morgan State University’s Hughes Football Stadium will allow fans for the 2021-2022 season.

Kendra Pugh, Assistant Sports Editor

Morgan State University’s athletic stadiums will be open to fans and spectators this year, according to athletic director Edward Scott.

“As of July 12th, fans will be allowed back in our arenas,” Scott said.

Scott said the state of Maryland’s coronavirus guidelines was a determining factor in reopening athletic stadiums to fans.

Once COVID-19 cases started to decline in the state, Scott said he felt that fans and spectators could be allowed in stadiums.

The last sporting event open to fans at Morgan was March 5, 2020, in the Hill Field House. Since then, the COVID-19 pandemic halted all university sports until the winter 2020-2021 season where fans were prohibited from attending games.

Now that the restriction has been lifted, the athletic department prepares for its first football game in nearly two years on Sept. 4 against Towson University.

In preparation for the upcoming sports season, the athletic department is looking at the vaccination rates among players and staff.

However, Scott declined to share how many individuals in the department are fully vaccinated with the Spokesman.

The department is following NCAA guidelines requiring face masks and social distancing for unvaccinated individuals. Players will also be tested regularly when traveling for games.

Despite Morgan requiring all students to get a COVID-19 vaccination, Scott is unsure how the mandate will affect athletes that are opting out of the vaccine due to medical or religious beliefs.

Scott said, “We don’t know how that will impact their sport because of traveling, but we are working on this aspect along with NCAA and MEAC.”

Scott says that he is working with the campus health committee led by Anita Hawkins, assistant dean of health and policy, to make sure that the athletics department abides by the university’s COVID-19 guidelines.