TOKYO — U.S. beach volleyball player Taylor Crabb has tested positive for COVID-19 and will likely miss the Olympic Games, the Southern California News Group has learned.
Crabb tested positive shortly after arriving in Japan over the weekend, according to a person familiar with the situation. While a replacement has not been officially named, Tri Bourne, a former USC standout, was flying en route to Tokyo Tuesday afternoon U.S. time.
Taylor Crabb and his partner Jake Gibb are scheduled to play Italy’s Enrico Rossi and Adrian Carambula in an Olympic Games preliminary phase match on Sunday night at Shiokaze Park next to Tokyo Bay.
Czech beach volleyball player Ondřej Perušič has also tested positive for COVID-19 and will miss his opening match.
The confirmation of Crabb’s positive test comes just hours after SCNG published a special report detailing how his participation in the Tokyo Games would not have been possible had an arbitrator not reduced his 2019 USA Volleyball suspension through September 2021 for violating a previous ban for misconduct involving a minor age girl.
Previously unreported USA Volleyball documents obtained by SCNG detail both Crabb’s initial suspension in 2017 and the USA Volleyball board of directors’ unanimous decision in May 2019 to extend the suspension through Sept. 28, 2021. The second decision came after he breached a settlement agreement for the first suspension by coaching at a camp for junior girls. The board’s decision was made with the clear realization that it would prevent Crabb from competing in the Tokyo Olympics, originally scheduled for 2020.
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“USAV understands the proposed suspension will prohibit Mr. Crabb from participating in the 2020 Olympic Games,” Rachael Stafford, USA Volleyball’s in-house counsel wrote in a May 14, 2019 email to the board of directors. “Under the circumstances, USAV feels this is the only appropriate action.”
The documents also reveal USA Volleyball’s repeated concerns about protecting minor age girls from “misconduct” by Crabb, a former national collegiate player of the year at Long Beach State and two-time MVP on the AVP beach circuit.
“Specifically, it is this kind of activity that Mr. Crabb was prohibited from doing because USAV desired to protect its junior girl participants,” Stafford wrote to the board, referring to his appearance at the girls camp in May 2019.
The first sign that something was amiss came Monday when Gibb was seen training in Tokyo without Crabb.