Texas Governor Says Outdoor Stadiums Can Host Fans At 25% Capacity

By 105.3 The Fan
DALLAS (105.3 The FAN) - Texas Governor Greg Abbott says professional sports teams with outdoor stadiums can hold fans at no more than 25% capacity.

Abbott issued the proclamation on Thursday. It says as follows: 

"Each professional sports league that desires to reopen must first submit a plan to the Texas Department of State Health Services (“DSHS”). Spectators are allowed for outdoor events, provided that outdoor venues limit the number of spectators to no more than 25% of the normal operating limits of the venue as determined by the facility owner. Spectators are not permitted for indoor events. Each plan must incorporate these minimum health protocols to the greatest extent possible."

The biggest winners under this order are MLS teams FC Dallas and the Houston Dynamo, Texas Motor Speedway, and the PGA Tour courses. According to Brad Townsend of the Dallas Morning News, The Colonial will not have enough time to prepare to host fans safely at the Charles Schwab Challenge, which is set to run in Fort Worth from June 11-14.

As for the Genesys 300 set to take place on June 6 in Fort Worth, TMS President Eddie Gossage tells 1080 KRLD that there isn't enough time to get fans to the event, but he believes this order is a "big step in the right direction."

Gossage also says he's hopeful that the NASCAR races that were postponed in March will be be permitted to have fans attend when they are rescheduled at the end of the summer. 

"Our March weekend races will be run later this summer and when that happens, boy, it would sure be nice to have the place open and operating just like it always is and has been. That's what we got our fingers crossed on. We got a plan in place that we would try and roll out if we can do that, so we'll just have to wait and see," he said.

As for the other professional teams who have retractable roof stadiums, it's unknown if they will be permitted to have fans under this order. Those included the Cowboys' AT&T Stadium, the Rangers' brand new Globe Life Field, the Astros' Minute Maid Park, and the Texans' NRG Stadium. 

“The Texas Rangers are looking forward to the potential of returning to play in 2020," the club said in a statement. "Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Players Association are having ongoing discussions about that possibility at the present time, and the Rangers have begun operational planning for if and when we have a spring training and regular season games at Globe Life Field. The health and safety of our players, staff, and fans are a top priority, and we will await further information and guidance from Major League Baseball and the appropriate health authorities in the coming days and weeks.”

The order won't have any effect on the Dallas Mavericks, Dallas Stars, Houston Rockets, and San Antonio Spurs, who all play indoors. 

The order also left out an important organization - the NCAA. Because Abbott's order only specified "professional sports teams" can have fans, it's unknown how this announcement will affect Texas, TCU, Baylor, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, and others who may have a fall football season.