Varsity head coaches receive email about skin infection: Athletic director warns teams to pick up in the locker rooms, or they won’t be disinfected

Epke Paquette and Ben Crawley, Sports Manager and News Editor

On Wednesday, Nov. 6, The Hawks’ Herald obtained an email that Director of Athletics Kiki Jacobs sent to the head coaches of all varsity sports. This email, sent out Nov. 5, disclosed there has been an issue with “some skin infections” on the men’s wrestling team. In the email, Jacobs said there is “no need to panic,” and that measures are being taken to neutralize the problem.

Jacobs also asked that all teams be sure to clean their locker rooms and disinfect their equipment, including the equipment used in the campus fitness center, which is also used by other RWU students and faculty members. 

An RWU employee who has asked to remain anonymous said the state of the men’s locker room that the wrestlers use is “disgusting.”

“I always say, ‘they’re going to get an infection’ when I go in there,” the anonymous source said. “There’s dirty towels and clothes all over the floor. It looks like a bomb went off. The smell is queasy.” 

Head Coach of RWU Wrestling Jon Egan gave an official statement on the matter. 

“The current situation of what we’re set up to practice with is not ideal for health and safety,” Egan said. 

When asked for further details, he declined to comment.

According to a 2013 report published by the American Orthopedic Society for Sports Medicine, the most common infection that led to lost practice time in National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) wrestling was herpes gladiatorum, also known as mat herpes. 40.5% of lost practice time is attributed to this, a rate far higher than that of other skin infections. 

NCAA guidelines state that wrestlers who have herpes cannot compete for 72 hours after their last lesion was observed by a doctor. 

Some other common infectious diseases include ringworm, scabies and Molluscum.

This story will be updated continuously.