On Thursday the Big Ten Conference announced it will be going to a conference-only season for all fall sports, including football, due to”unprecedented times” during the coronavirus pandemic.
The Big Ten said in a statement, “We are facing uncertain and unprecedented times, and the health, safety and wellness of our student-athletes, coaches, game officials, and others associated with our sports programs and campuses remain our number one priority.”
The statement also read, “By limiting competition to other Big Ten institutions, the Conference will have the greatest flexibility to adjust its own operations throughout the season and make quick decisions in real-time based on the most current evolving medical advice and the fluid nature of the pandemic.”
The Big Ten became the first of the Power 5 conferences to make this type of a move and it comes one day after the Ivy League ruled out playing all sports this fall.
According to ESPN, if college football can and will be played this fall, Big Ten presidents and athletic directors said they prefer the conference-only model, which will eliminate some long-distance travel and help ensure teams are being tested for the coronavirus universally.
Other sports affected include men’s and women’s cross country, field hockey, men’s and women’s soccer and women’s volleyball.
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