The Ivy League voted on Wednesday to postpone all fall sports, with no date set for resuming the conference’s athletic events, per TMG Sports’ Mark Blaudschun.
The conference hopes it can move fall sports to the spring, including football, per The Athletic’s Dana O’Neil. CBS Sports’ Jon Rothstein added on Wednesday that the Ivy League “will not entertain any sports being played until after January 1.”
Winter sports such as college basketball, which is scheduled to begin nationwide in early November, are likely to see their calendars shifted as a result of the Ivy League’s decision.
The league becomes the first Division I conference to reach such a decision on fall sports amid the coronavirus pandemic. On Tuesday, Division III’s Centennial Conference announced it will suspend all sporting events in the fall and may explore moving fall sports, including football, to the spring. Smaller college football programs, including Division II’s Morehouse and a handful of Division III schools, have canceled their seasons. With the Ivy League postponing fall sports, there’s a possibility other conferences could follow suit.
In mid-March, the league made headlines when it canceled its men’s and women’s basketball conference tournaments due to coronavirus concerns. Many people were alarmed by the decision but quickly realized it was the right call as the pandemic worsened. Other conferences began nixing their tournaments as well, and the NCAA canceled March Madness only two days after the Ivy League’s actions.
Many unanswered questions remain in the NCAA regarding the 2020 football schedule and player health and safety. The season is set to start in under two months, but some programs like Houston and Kansas have been forced to suspend voluntary workouts amid spikes in COVID-19 cases.
While football programs face decisions about camps and the season, schools must also make tough choices about coronavirus testing protocols and bringing students back on campuses. Harvard announced Monday it will bring only 40% of undergraduates on campus for the fall semester, and the remaining students will learn remotely.
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