Has Morehouse Paved the Way for Other Schools to Cancel Their College Football Season?


David Thomas isn’t your normal academic. President of one of the nation’s most esteemed Black colleges, Thomas once played center and linebacker on the football field and, as a foreign-exchange student, competed overseas in basketball. He realizes the cultural significance of sports and understands its place in the world.

That’s why his decision to cancel Morehouse College’s 2020 football season is so jarring.

While hundreds of NCAA universities feverishly debate contingency plans to play football around a pandemic, Thomas last week ended all discussion on the topic at his Division II school in Atlanta. More than two months before the season was scheduled to kickoff, he pulled the plug. Though unrelated, Morehouse’s announcement Friday came amid unrest in the college sports world, as well as the nation. COVID-19 cases are surging across the country, with at least five states suspending reopening plans, including football-playing behemoths Texas and Florida. Dozens of FBS schools that reopened for voluntary workouts are now battling outbreaks in the double figures. Four teams have suspended workouts, and three more have had or have at least 20 players in quarantine or isolation.

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