Carolina Panthers owner David Tepper believes there should be enough coronavirus tests by the fall so that NFL teams can play games in stadiums with some fans. "You won't be playing having full stadiums, but that doesn't mean you can't have some fans in the stadium either," Tepper told CNBC on Wednesday. "If you're comfortable being in a closed airplane for a cross-country trip, 18 inches apart, maybe with two seats in between you and being 5 feet away from each other, you might be comfortable in an open-air stadium." The Panthers are one of 20 NFL teams with open-air stadiums. Five more have retractable roofs. The NFL hasn't officially said when players and team personnel can return to their facilities for offseason workouts, but the league did release the 2020 schedule last week, with games beginning the second week in September.
Rory McIlroy says he'll play first three events when PGA Tour resumes
Rory Mcllroy is looking forward to a return to competitive golf and won't waste any time as he expects to play the first three PGA Tour events when the schedule starts again next month. McIlroy, the No. 1-ranked player in the world, said Wednesday that he will play the Charles Schwab Challenge in Fort Worth, Texas, then RBC Heritage in Hilton Head, South Carolina, and then the Travelers Championship in Cromwell, Connecticut, once the schedule resumes following a shutdown due to the coronavirus pandemic. "The tour is going to put on a charter [flight] and there's going to be a lot of testing and make sure that no one is getting on these planes or into these hotels or onto the golf courses that have tested positive for COVID-19 or showing signs that they may be positive.
NCAA extends NBA draft withdrawal deadline, awaits league's pre-draft timeline
The NCAA announced Wednesday that it has extended indefinitely the deadline for college basketball players to withdraw from the NBA draft and retain their college eligibility amid the coronavirus pandemic. The deadline was June 3, but Dan Gavitt, the NCAA's senior vice president of basketball, said in a statement that it will be extended "with the health and well-being of our student-athletes in mind, along with their ability to make the most informed decisions during this uncertain time." Gavitt said in his statement that a new withdrawal date will be set once the league determines a timeline for the 2020 pre-draft process.
Why NBA stars and billionaire owners are letting Adam Silver lead the league's revival
As the uncertainty grows, and scientific, economic and competitive elements collide, there's one constant in the struggle to revive the NBA: Owners and players are delivering Adam Silver full room to operate, govern and make the decision on resuming play amid a pandemic. No power grabs, no factions, no public criticisms on the commissioner's judgment.
In a league of wildly rich, successful, powerful and, yes, egomaniacal characters, no one has tried to usurp Silver's voice in this coronavirus crisis. These billionaires and global icons left the shutdown to the commissioner, and together they're leaving the resumption and reshaping of a different NBA to him too.
NASCAR returns and Darlington delivers, despite sport's new normal The hours leading up to Sunday's 400-mile race at Darlington Raceway -- actually, the months leading up to it -- were so strange. The moments immediately following the event, as Kevin Harvick reached a rarely achieved career milestone and did his celebratory donuts in front of an empty grandstand, they too were like nothing NASCAR has ever felt or seen before.
International Tennis Hall of Fame induction ceremony postponed to 2021 due to coronavirus
The International Tennis Hall of Fame's 2020 induction ceremony for Goran Ivanisevic and Conchita Martinez won't be held, and the annual men's grass-court Hall of Fame Open tournament has been canceled. The induction was scheduled at the Hall in Newport, Rhode Island, for July 18. That is the same day the tournament was supposed to finish. But the COVID-19 outbreak has resulted in the suspension of all sanctioned tennis competition since March and at least until the end of July.
World TeamTennis still on track to open three-week season on July 12
World TeamTennis CEO Carlos Silva says the league is "still on track for July 12'' to open its three-week season and is hoping to select a site this week. Silva said in a telephone interview Monday with the AP that four cities are "in the mix.'' He mentioned Texas and Florida as possible host states. Silva said he has been monitoring other events taking place recently to see how they handled health protocols, including UFC fights over the past week-plus and a NASCAR race Sunday in Darlington, South Carolina. Neither of those sports allowed spectators and while WTT's plan at the moment is to do the same, Silva said it is possible a small number of fans might be allowed, depending on where the matches are.