The omicron variant of COVID-19 is still spreading rapidly through Utah, and several sports venues are taking steps to mitigate the spread.
BYU on Monday announced that starting Jan. 20, it will require proof of vaccination or a negative test to enter all indoor events, which include athletic events at the Marriott Center, where men’s and women’s basketball play, and the Smith Fieldhouse, where gymnastics holds home meets.
The news from BYU comes on the same day that Vivint Arena, where the Utah Jazz play, announced that it will be enforcing the Salt Lake County’s recent mask mandate at its events.
The Huntsman Center, where the Utah Utes men’s and women’s basketball teams play, is also following the county’s mask mandate. The University of Utah as a whole put a mandate in place.
COVID-19 has affected several players and practices of the state’s sports teams. The Jazz currently have five players and three coaches in the NBA’s health and safety protocols. And the women’s basketball team at BYU has been extra careful lately with their behavior in order to make sure no one catches the virus.
The county heath department’s executive director, Dr. Angela Dunn, issued the order late last week. It requires everyone to wear a “well-fitting mask” — like a KN95 — while indoors or waiting in a line to enter a public place.
The order started Saturday and expires at 5 p.m. on Feb. 7.
The Utah Department of Health on Monday reported more than 24,000 new cases of COVID-19 from over the weekend, and 20 more deaths due to the virus.