The Big 12 Board of Directors approved a plan Friday for student-athletes to return to campus and participate in voluntary athletic activities, permitting student athletes to use campus facilities.
The Phase-In Plan states that football student-athletes will be allowed to return to their athletic facilities beginning on June 15. Volleyball, soccer and cross country student-athletes are permitted to return on July 1.
Remaining student-athletes in the Big 12 will be able to return on July 15.
🚨 Phase-In Plan Approved 🚨Beginning June 15, football student-athletes will be permitted to access campus athletic facilities. Volleyball, soccer and cross country student-athletes - July 1.Full details ➡️ https://t.co/FdSIKeTZo8 pic.twitter.com/BPHRKVOUZF— Big 12 Conference (@Big12Conference) May 23, 2020
On May 14, Oklahoma head coach Lincoln Riley said he was in favor of waiting as long as needed to bring athletes back to campus.
“In my opinion, we need to bring them back as late as we possibly can before we play a season," Riley said. "Every day early that we bring them in is a day we could’ve gotten better. It’s a day we could’ve learned more about the virus. It’s a day PPE maybe gets better. It’s a day closer to a vaccine. It’s a day that our testing equipment and testing capabilities, and it’s just not worth it. So, we’ve got to be patient. We got one shot at this, and we’ve got to do it right.”
Hours prior to the Big 12's decision, Oklahoma Athletic Director Joe Castiglione said the NCAA is "not even close" to making a decision on the upcoming football season."
In a previous chat w/Joe C @soonerad he said in his opinion a decision would need to be made by early to mid-June if college football was going to start on time. I asked him today if he felt they were on track to make a decision on that timeline? His response... @Sportstalk1400 pic.twitter.com/BuodnKQnND— Toby Rowland (@TRowOU) May 22, 2020
The Sooners are still scheduled to play Missouri State Sept. 5 in Norman.