NCAA weighs in on upcoming seasons for football and fall sports

Joel Coleman

With everyone waiting to see how (or if) football will be played this fall, NCAA president Mark Emmert issued this statement on Friday with regards to the upcoming football season as well as all fall NCAA sports:

“Today the Board of Governors and I agreed that we must continue to thoughtfully and aggressively monitor health conditions around the country and the implementation of the COVID-19 guidelines we issued last week. The health and well-being of college athletes is the highest priority in deciding whether to proceed with our 22 NCAA championships beginning in late November. We all remain deeply concerned about the infection trend lines we see. It is clear that the format of our championships will have to change if they are to be conducted in a safe and fair manner. We discussed other complexities in addition to the health and safety impacts, to include team availability, travel limitations and various local and state restrictions. We will continue our discussions in August.”

So essentially, nothing has been decided. Wait-and-see mode continues.

For Southeastern Conference purposes, there is still no decision on what a 2020 football/fall sports season will look like. However Mississippi State athletic director John Cohen did say earlier this week that he is optimistic that football will happen in some form and that all Bulldog fall athletes are chomping at the bit to compete.

"I have a lot of confidence in the fact that we’re going to play football this year," Cohen said on Tuesday. "I’m not 100 percent sure the timeframe. Even though that’s not the answer anybody wants to hear, it’s the reality that we’re faced with and we’re going to get as much information as we can, especially over the next two weeks, and make the best decision we can for our student-athletes, our staff and for our great fans across the Southeastern Conference.

"There’s no question after talking to our student-athletes, they want to play. And I’m talking about our volleyball players. I’m talking about our soccer players. I’m talking about our football players. They want to play. This has been something that has been a part of their lives since they were little kids and they don’t want to stop playing their sport and we want to do everything we can to see if we can make that happen."