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Santa Clara County adds new wrinkle to already tough athletics season

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The Cardinal, among many other teams, are unable to practice or play ‘at home’ for the next few weeks

Stanford v California Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

Well, here we are, playing a football and basketball season amid a global pandemic. We certainly knew we’d see our fair share of problems but little did we know that four weeks into the football season, we’d not see our beloved Cardinal athletics programs not be able to participate in practices, games or basically any congregations at home.

Santa Clara County issued an order, citing a spike on coronavirus cases in the county, temporarily prohibiting professional, college and youth recreation activities that ‘involve physical contact or close proximity to persons outside one’s household, including all contact sports.’

The order is said to be in effect until December 21.

Immediately, the San Francisco 49ers were reported to be looking for new ‘homes’ to play their remaining games. Niners Nation pointed out the fact that they may be looking to Arizona’s State Farm Stadium.

Stanford has but one home game left on their schedule, a December 12 home game against Oregon State. Complicating matters even more, the order also stated that anyone who enters Santa Clara County from more than 150 miles away must quarantine for 14 days, meaning if Stanford were to return home from their December 5 game against Washington, they wouldn’t be able to leave for two weeks.

Odds are, the Cardinal are looking for places to play their December 12 game against Oregon State while at the same time looking for places to stay AND practice following their December 5 game versus Washington.

“Stanford Athletics is aware of today’s announcement by Santa Clara County and remains in close communication with University and County officials at this time on appropriate next steps,” the athletic department said in a statement. “Further details will be provided as they become available.”

The Stanford basketball programs are also affected as the women’s basketball team’s next four games are scheduled for home. Stanford men’s program has four homes games within the order’s window as well.

The county reported 760 new COVID-19 cases and 239 COVID-related hospitalizations on Saturday, the same day as the order, both of which were single-day records during the coronavirus pandemic.

As more information comes to light about where and when the Stanford programs affected by this order comes to light, we’ll update here.