U of L plans to complete new dorm to house student-athletes in 2022 Monday, Nov 16 2020 

By Madelin Shelton — 

The University of Louisville has approved plans to build a new residency hall across Floyd Street from the Planet Fitness Kueber Center, an athletic training facility utilized by U of L student-athletes. The residency hall is expected to be completed by the start of the fall 2022 semester and will be available to both student-athletes and other U of L students.

The project, aptly named the Southeast Corridor Residential Hall project, is a partnership between U of L Campus Housing, U of L Athletics and a third-party developer consisting of Buffalo Construction and Larry Gough, who developed Cardinal Towne. The groundbreaking of the construction is expected to start in March of 2021 according to Vince Tyra, Vice President for Intercollegiate Athletics and Director of Athletics.

The property is currently being used for university parking.

The facility will comprise of 128 beds, of which no more than 50% will be occupied by student-athletes to meet NCAA guidelines. U of L Athletics will claim 63 beds for student-athletes and 10 beds for team managers and graduate assistants.

The project will cost an estimated $23.5 million, with $3.5 million coming from U of L Athletics through donor funds. U of L Athletics will retain the naming rights to the facility in exchange for their contribution. U of L Campus Housing will manage the facility and include a full-time live-in hall director and three resident assistants.

Members of the men’s and women’s basketball teams and the women’s lacrosse team will reside in the residency hall. The building will also house a Living Learning Community (LLC) comprised of sophomore and above Sports Administration majors.

U of L Athletics expects the residential hall to help their department with the recruitment and retention of top-level students and student-athletes. It will include an enclosed crosswalk over Floyd Street that will link the residence hall to the Kueber Center and will serve as a beautification effort for the Floyd Street area of campus.

“This will obviously be a first-class project, the renderings represent that. It’s really going to help in the recruitment of our Sports Administration program which is one of our fastest growing programs and is ranked number one in the country,” Tyra said.

Below are concept designs of the building once it is completed:

Photos Courtesy of  U of L Athletics

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85 U of L student athletes and athletics staff test positive for COVID-19 Thursday, Aug 20 2020 

By John McCarthy–

The University of Louisville athletics department has done 1,373 COVID-19 tests on student athletes, staff and coaches since the beginning of involuntary workouts on June 2. Results show 85 of the tests came back positive for COVID-19, a positivity rate of 6.2% in the department. As of Aug. 19, Kentucky’s positivity rate is 5.41%.

This spike in cases comes after U of L men’s basketball activities were put on hold following two positive COVID-19 cases in early July. Three U of L men’s soccer players were also dismissed from the team after attending an off-campus party that led to the spread of COVID-19 amongst the team on August 7.

U of L plans to move forward with their sports this fall, along with the rest of the ACC. However, sports this fall with only be played against in-conference opponents and in-state opponents such as Murray State University and Western Kentucky University.

“We have a strong commitment from our medical, administrative staff, and the athletic department that we expect to be met with the same commitment from our student-athletes,” U of L Athletics Director Vince Tyra said.

U of L football plans to host Western Kentucky Sept. 12 at Cardinal Stadium to open up the season.

File Photo // The Louisville Cardinal 

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Five months later, social distancing still applies Tuesday, Aug 18 2020 

By Grace Welsh–

There’s no debating that the last five months of our lives have been full of uncertainty and confusion. We are living through events that no one alive has experienced before.

With the start of a new school year and students returning to campus, the temptation to socialize in big groups is strong. However, it is imperative that we limit these gatherings for the sake of our community. 

Earlier this month, an off-campus party was linked to 29 cases of COVID-19 in U of L athletes. Officials in the department have suspended workouts for men and women’s soccer, field hockey, and volleyball for the next week. They have also dismissed the three men’s soccer members that were responsible for organizing the party.

In a press release last Tuesday, U of L’s Athletic Director Vince Tyra said he was disappointed by the athletes actions. 

“It is clear that these student-athletes did not meet the code of conduct of the university or their team,” Tyra said. “Ignoring the safety protocols issued by federal, state and local officials, as well as the athletic department, is unacceptable and dangerous. Their history of actions are not in alignment with the values of this university and athletics department.” 

A majority of the 29 cases were asymptomatic, but the virus is not something to be messed with. 

The CDC reports that older individuals and those with weakened immune systems are at a higher risk for long-term respiratory, cardiovascular and kidney damage from the virus. So, while you may be fine if you contract the virus, others may not be. 

“Time and time again, it’s shown that transmission is ongoing before we have a grasp of the numbers,” said Erin Welsh, a candidate in disease ecology and host of This Podcast Will Kill You. “This is due to slow testing, transmission before symptoms, and the high numbers of asymptomatic individuals.” 

Because of the high rate of asymptomatic cases, it is impossible to tell who is infected and who is not without a test. Therefore, it is best to keep the parties to an absolute minimum. Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear highly encourages gatherings of no more than 10 people. 

A party with just one or two infected individuals can be deadly when the newly infected people go out in the community.

We don’t know how long it will take for things to return back to normal. Until then, it’s important that we do our part to exercise necessary health precautions. Wash your hands frequently, wear a mask in public and stay at least six feet apart from others. 

We are all in this together.

Let’s all put in the effort to stay home so we can protect our community and slow the spread. While it is definitely tempting to socialize with everyone you missed over quarantine, that doesn’t mean the virus isn’t still a prevalent part of our lives.

File Graphic // The Louisville Cardinal

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