Ohio State reopened the Woody Hayes Athletic Center earlier this week for limited use by about two dozen members of its football staff.


Players could soon return, too.


The school plans to allow players to use athletic facilities on campus for individual or voluntary workouts on June 8, athletic director Gene Smith confirmed on Wednesday.


The step hinges upon a vote by the NCAA’s Division I council, which is considering lifting its moratorium on on-campus activities when it expires at the end of the month. The vote is scheduled to be held later Wednesday.


If the ban expires May 31, conferences and schools across the country would be permitted by the college sports governing body to allow athletes access to their facilities.


The target date for the players’ return could be delayed if the moratorium is extended.


The Big Ten also has a suspension of organized team activities that runs through June 1.


Facilities at Ohio State have been closed since March, a shutdown that was enacted amid the outbreak of COVID-19.


Spring sports seasons were canceled, along with the NCAA men’s and women’s basketball and hockey tournaments and the remainder of the Buckeyes’ spring football practices.


With the facilities closed and in-person classes canceled, players returned to their homes, scattered across the country.


More details around OSU’s reopening of athletic facilities are expected to be revealed when Smith holds a teleconference with reporters at 2 p.m.


When coaches returned to the football facility this week, they went through various health and safety protocols that included temperature checks and symptom assessments.


The size of workouts would likely be limited due to regulations in Ohio.


While the state’s stay-at-home order has been relaxed, gatherings of 10 or more people are still prohibited in an effort to reduce the spread of the coronavirus.


jkaufman@dispatch.com


@joeyrkaufman