The COVID-19 pandemic has placed new costs on budgets across the college athletics landscape.
The Auburn University athletic department has spent more than $700,000 on COVID-19 testing thus far, according to athletic director Allen Greene.
“To date, Auburn's sports medicine team has administered more than 6,200 tests to student-athletes since their return to campus in June at a cost of more than $700,000,” Greene wrote in a letter posted on the athletic department’s website.
It has worked at the SEC school in Alabama, with Greene reporting that the student-athletes have had a positive rate of 1.39 percent. However, with Auburn football halfway through its schedule and the NCAA winter seasons approaching, Greene knows the coronavirus situation on campus could still go south.
“We are not taking a victory lap,” he wrote. “On the contrary, we are mindful that uncompromising diligence to protocols is required to minimize the chances of contracting a highly contagious virus that never takes a day off. We won't let down our guard.”
Auburn has limited capacity at Jordan-Hare Stadium to 17,490 people — 20 percent of max capacity — during football games this fall. Greene wrote that $1.5 million has been raised by Auburn football ticket holders “converting their 2020 priority seating contribution into philanthropic gifts to support Auburn student-athletes.”