The Return of College Football is Vital For Other College Sports

A.J. Black

The world continues to grip with the new reality created by the outbreak of the COVID-19 coronavirus. While the number of people infected with the virus continues to rise, sports seem like the least important thing to talk about. However sports, specifically college football is a big part of many people's lives. Many have created their own identities with their school or local team, and looking forward to the fall is a light at the end of the tunnel for many people . But as of right now, the 2020 season is in jeopardy. While Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy and Clemson coach Dabo Swinney have set hypothetical return dates in May, many believe that football will not return on time, if at all this year. 

What will happen if college football does not return this year? First and foremost, it will be a huge economic hit for college athletic departments around the country. Football as SI's Pat Forde said in the video above, is the cash cow that allows many athletic programs to run. Many programs like baseball, volleyball, and swimming all are run mainly on the revenue brought in from the football program. Television contracts, conference revenue sharing, tickets and bowl game shares are a huge revenue stream for these programs. Losing that money would be a huge blow for schools. 

As Forde said above, if football is gone this season, athletic departments are going to have to "tighten up their belt buckles", meaning tough decisions may need to be made. If that revenue is gone, schools most likely are going to have to make adjustments to their practice or even worse, cuts. Earlier today SI.com posted a story talking to AD's from across the country about this potentiality. Just read the title of the article, "We're All Effed, There's No Other Way To Look At This", it speaks volumes. 

The ramifications laid out in the aforementioned article are grim, "from the formation of a super division to a new wave of conference realignment, from money-saving travel modifications to football scheduling alterations, from discontinued sports to thousands of lost jobs." 

How would losing a season of football affect Boston College? It's hard to imagine at this moment. The school could find money somewhere to float the athletics department for the year until things clear up. But that might be tough, as the entire university is going to feel the financial pinch from this outbreak. Or will Father Leahy and Martin Jarmond be forced to take a look at the department and make tough choices? Boston College has 31 athletic programs and a sizable athletics department. 

There are still a ton of variables in the air. Clearly everyone's health and well being is first and foremost. But looking ahead when we get through this, if college football does not return, the world of NCAA athletics could be turned upside down.  

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