Clemson’s football team has hit the 85% vaccination threshold.
After telling reporters before the start of fall camp the Tigers were “right there at” that number, Clemson coach Dabo Swinney said Tuesday the Tigers have exceeded it in terms of the amount of players who have been vaccinated against COVID-19.
The team isn’t quite at 100%, Swinney said, but “we’re in a great place staff and player-wise.”
Swinney said a couple of players who have started the vaccination process are scheduled to get their second dose Thursday. ACC teams that meet the threshold won’t be required to regularly test their student-athletes.
Hitting that number could help Clemson and its fellow league members in other ways, too.
Last year, if teams had a COVID-19 outbreak that left them with too small a roster to play with in a given week, games were often rescheduled. But some conferences have already made it clear that won’t be happening should the same situation occur this fall.
SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey and Big 12 Commissioner Bob Bowlsby said at their league’s respective media days earlier this summer that games won’t be rescheduled because of COVID-19 issues and could ultimately be deemed a forfeit. Jim Phillips, commissioner of the ACC, said at his league’s media kickoff event last month that the conference hasn’t yet decided how to handle games that might be canceled because of pandemic-related issues. The ACC still hasn’t announced what that policy will look like for the upcoming season.
While neither the ACC nor Clemson is requiring its football players to be vaccinated, the hope, Swinney said earlier this month, is the possibility of completely losing games off the schedule is enough incentive for more players to be inoculated. Clemson has now hit a significant mark.