CLEVELAND — In an interview with ESPN Cleveland, Gov. Mike DeWine discussed COVID-19, his response to the crisis and answered a few questions about the future of sports—one of the many unknowns of the pandemic.
The governor said for sports such as baseball, which saw its season halted just before it began due to coronavirus concerns, the pandemic has to be controlled not just in Ohio, but across the country.
“For a national sport like baseball, what complicates it is that every state is at a different phase of this. You’re seeing that now in New York. New York is clearly ahead of us. Michigan is getting hit a lot harder than we’re getting hit. To play a national sport like baseball you’re gonna have to get out of this just about everywhere,” DeWine told ESPN Cleveland.
DeWine said that one of the biggest keys for the return of sports and life as we knew it starts with testing. He said that widespread testing is needed. He shed some light on testing to come that may help with tracking and slowing the virus.
“Part of the key to this is getting enough testing so that we can tell who’s safe and who can move forward. There’s some blood testing that is coming on that might be able to detect if you’ve already had it and you might be safer heading into the workforce,” DeWine said.
Without widespread testing, it would be hard to tell who has the virus and who has already had the virus, making it dangerous for major sporting events to return. The governor did seem hopeful about the chance for sports to return in a limited capacity this year if the virus can be controlled.
“It’s conceivable that some of these sports can start up without spectators. It’s certainly possible with significant testing you could put players on the field long before you can put people in the stands,” DeWine told ESPN Cleveland.
When asked by ESPN Cleveland if he thought the football season could start in September, the governor said, “I just don’t know. Frankly, I don’t think anybody really knows where we are going to be."
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