Big Ten, Pac-12 postpone 2020 football season

UPDATE (4:55 PM, August 11, 2020) – The Pac-12 Conference also announced Tuesday it will not hold any competitions until January 1, 2021. This affects not just fall sports, but also the first part of the winter sports season. The Pac-12 is the second Power 5 conference to postpone a fall sports season due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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WOAY – The Big Ten Conference announced Tuesday it has chosen to postpone the fall 2020 sports season, with the possibility of holding competitions in the spring.

“Our primary responsibility is to make the best possible decisions in the interest of our students, faculty and staff,” said Morton Schapiro, Chair of the Big Ten Council of Presidents/Chancellors and Northwestern University President.

“The mental and physical health and welfare of our student-athletes has been at the center of every decision we have made regarding the ability to proceed forward,” said Big Ten Commissioner Kevin Warren. “As time progressed and after hours of discussion with our Big Ten Task Force for Emerging Infectious Diseases and the Big Ten Sports Medicine Committee, it became abundantly clear that there was too much uncertainty regarding potential medical risks to allow our student-athletes to compete this fall.”

This is the first FBS Power 5 conference to make a decision to postpone the season amid the COVID-19 pandemic; the Mid-American and Mountain West conferences also made this call on Saturday and Monday, respectively. In addition, the University of Connecticut and University of Massachusetts, both FBS independents, have said they won’t play this fall, nor will Conference USA member Old Dominion.

West Virginia is a member of the Big 12, Marshall is part of Conference USA, and Virginia Tech is in the Atlantic Coast Conference. None of those leagues, as of Tuesday, have made a decision to cancel or postpone the 2020 football season, apart from the Monarchs, who made the decision on their own.