Football team’s COVID free streak up to 9 weeks


CWU athletics

Head Coach Cristopher Fisk talking to his team during practice. The Wildcats are getting ready to play their first game in over a year on April 10 vs the Montana Grizzlies.

Jared Galanti, Senior Reporter

With COVID-19 testing happening every Tuesday and results getting back Wednesday the football team has made it nine straight weeks without a single positive test. 

Head coach Christopher Fisk said the entire team has taken the virus seriously and that starts with the team leaders that were voted on by the players.

“We have a leadership group here in our program that is formed by a guy from each position group voted on by their teammates, they have done a great job,” Fisk said. “But I think everybody in our program from the players to our coaches to our training staff, everybody is excited to play this game in Montana.”

The Wildcat’s first game of the season is on April 10 against the University of Montana Grizzlies. 

Fisk said that protocols such as team members staying within their personal bubble of people, having limited amounts of personnel in a room during meetings, wearing masks at all times while practicing and constantly using hand sanitizer have given the football team the ability to play next week. 

Will Ortner, a senior offensive lineman, praised both the coaching staff and the players for taking the virus very seriously.

“And then when it comes down to the players I know a lot of guys, some of our more senior guys like (Running Back) Michael Roots and (Linebacker) Donte Hamilton, those guys are really harping on it too for their respective sides (of the ball),” Ortner said. 

Both Fisk and Ortner said that they are really impressed by the diligence the players have shown while navigating something as tough as this virus.

To protect themselves from COVID-19, protocols such as wearing masks and staying six feet apart while practicing have been implemented to protect both players and coaches.

“It shows that our team is disciplined,” Ortner said. “Like that’s one of our core values in our team, it’s discipline, you know do your job and you know in this situation our job is to stay COVID free, practice and play. And have the discipline for when one of your buddies hits you up like ‘hey let’s go hang out,’ ‘let’s go do this,’ no man I can’t right now. Right now this is what’s important to me, it’s football.”

Fisk echoed that same rhetoric about how the team has stayed diligent and understands what the program means.

“I think it just says that our guys understand the core values of our program,” Fisk said. “They understand what we’re trying to do and football at CWU is important and it’s not just important to our kids, but to our fans and I think when you decide to play football here you decide to take on that responsibility of representing this institution.” 

Fisk said he thinks his team will become better as a group because of the way they have banded together when it comes to tackling the virus.

“I believe it was Coach (Nick) Saben who said the teams that handled COVID-19 the best will have the greatest chance to succeed and we’re kind of looking at it the same way,” Fisk said. “If we can handle this the best, if we can bank the most reps, if we can have the least amount of guys miss practice, miss lifting, miss conditioning we have a greater chance to succeed.”