Shepherd University faces financial hurdles in bringing back athletics


SHEPHERDSTOWN, W. Va. (WDVM) – The return of sports has caused a lot of concern and controversy.

Fans in West Virginia have seen the return of the WVU Mountaineers and high school sports, but Shepherd has yet to compete this fall.

“It’s financial at the end of the day,” said Chauncey Winbush, Shepherd University Vice President of Athletics. “The NCAA requires significant testing which is understandable. You want to make sure that you’re keeping your students and athletes safe, and at this point in time, it’s a huge financial hurdle from a financial standpoint.”

And that financial hurdle is largely in part to how much each individual test costs. Right now, the average cost of one COVID-19 test is $100.

“You’re talking about $1.1 million.” said Winbush, giving a ballpark number of what it would cost to test their athletes per NCAA requirements.

“We’re hoping that somebody comes out with a $5 or $10 test, but even $10, that’s 10 percent of that $1.1 million – you’re still talking about over $100,000, so still a significant hurdle.”

Winbush has a son who plays high school soccer and has been able to compete this fall.

“I’m glad that some of those kids are still being able to compete, but this is the hand that we’ve been dealt as a University, and we’re trying to make the best of it.”

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