Louisville Cardinals: Vince Tyra in the right to send stern message

Vince Tyra lambasts actions of Louisville Cardinals athletes.

Just weeks ago, Louisville Cardinals Athletic Director Vince Tyra was fine to give two members of the men’s basketball program a bit of privacy when they tested positive to COVID-19.

It makes sense. The health of student-athletes can, and should be, a matter cared for with a bit of sensitivity.

However, on Wednesday, Tyra changed his tune a bit in a lengthy zoom press conference where he took the tone of a disappointed father figure as he shared the details of the 29 student-athletes that tested positive for the virus this week.

The carriers were linked back to a party that took place involving team members from the volleyball, men’s and women’s soccer, and field hockey teams.

“It goes without saying, I’m incredibly disappointed and frustrated today with what’s occurred,” Tyra explained.

The overall tone of the press conference was a bit uncomfortable, and that was intentional on Tyra’s part.

I think it’s absolutely justifiable as well.

The health and safety of the student athletes should be the No. 1 priority for the coaches and administrators around any athletic department. In this case, Louisville Cardinals staffers did just about everything in their power to prevent the spread of the virus. Still, however, one night of slip-ups yielded some of the highest positive results numbers of any school in the country.

Tyra’s intent was clearly to send a message to the athletic department as a whole. Every athlete was coached on how to prevent COVID-19 transmission, and ultimately their negligence is going to be to their own detriment.

The big concern for Louisville Cardinals fans should be if the lack of rule-following continues with a player from the football team or one of the basketball or women’s lacrosse teams (who all share the same building). These are where much larger groups of players gather and the spread of the virus could be detrimental to Louisville athletics as a whole.

If just one football player is negligent and ends up contracting the virus, it could spread like a wild fire given the close proximity of a large group of players and coaches.

The vast majority of players are doing their part, but it only takes a few small slip-ups for things to get out of hand in a hurry.

Tyra is right to emphasize the student code of conduct. On one hand, the students should be given the freedom to make their own choices. On the other hand, their choices, as in anything in life, should have consequences if they are dangerous and harmful to others.

Hopefully Tyra’s tone gets the point across for Louisville Cardinals student athletes.