“The momentary, 30-second post-game celebration in the locker room involved team members who had zero positive COVID-19 tests.”
In some ways, Massachusetts is doing a better job of combating COVID-19 than most other states. Still, there are plenty of pandemic pockets—with a few of them, to no one’s surprise, on college campuses.
According to a database collected by the New York Times, there were 682 positive coronavirus cases among Commonwealth college students in the final week of September. Boston College led the pack; according to the school’s online coronavirus counter, BC had 177 positive cases as of Oct. 2.
“We will continue to quickly identify and test individuals who are deemed to be close contacts of anyone testing positive, and follow our quarantine and isolation protocols to prevent the spread of the virus,” BC Director of University Health Services Dr. Douglas Comeau said in a media statement.
Regarding those protocols … while many college football programs nationwide postponed or cancelled their 2020 seasons, the Eagles soared instead, and recently made (the bad kind of) headlines after a video of the team crammed into their locker room—without masks, celebrating a big win—hit social media. This just a few weeks after the school reportedly saw a spike in positive cases following two off-campus parties.
Weekly official Boston College statements about the pandemic have all been similarly-worded, painting a rosy picture of the school’s response efforts; the most recent one did not mention the football team’s possible violations of safety protocols, while a team statement was entirely defensive: “The momentary, 30-second post-game celebration in the locker room involved team members who had zero positive COVID-19 tests.”
Newton City Councilor Alicia Bowman was less forgiving, and blasted BC on social media following the release of the locker room video.
“As an elected official in Newton, where much of the Boston College campus is located, this video upsets me,” Bowman tweeted. “BC Football players do not live in a bubble. COVID-19 is real and deadly but clearly no one here cares about that.”