The 2020 college football season appears on the brink of being shut down in the wake of the global Covid-19 pandemic following a series of meetings between leading conference commissioners at the weekend.
There is a reported acknowledgement from athletic directors and university leaders that any college sports this fall is now unlikely amid the ongoing health crisis.
“It’s not fair what we’re doing to our coaches and student-athletes,” one long-time Power Five athletic director told CBS Sports. “The sooner we can come to a finality, the better.”
“I think it’s inevitable [the season will not be played in the fall],” another veteran Power Five athletic director added.
No decision has been made yet but reports suggest that the Big Ten conference is ready to pull the plug on its fall season, and possibly postpone it until spring 2021, though this move comes with complications such as the weather.
It is believed the other Power Five conferences – the Atlantic Coast Conference, Big 12, Pac-12 and Southeastern Conference– will follow suit, though this is not certain.
Last week, the University of Connecticut became the first team in the Football Bowl Subdivision tier of American college sports to cancel its 2020 football season due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.
Over the weekend, the Mid-American Conference officially canceled its 2020 college football season, becoming the first Football Bowl Subdivision conference to decide not to play this fall.
“I think by the end of the week the fall sports will be postponed in all conferences,” a source told Sports Illustrated.
“In the next 72 hours college football is going to come to a complete stop,” another source added.
In response, several high-profile college football players – including Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence – have posted messages on on social media saying that they want to play this season.
Lawrence tweeted: “Let’s work together to create a situation where we can play the game that all of us love. Not divide and argue. There is a way forward.”
Numerous college players tweeted a unified message about their demands and concerns with the hashtags #weareunited and #wewanttoplay.
Already, the the entire lower tiers Division II and Division III of the National Collegiate Athletic Association have moved to cancel their fall sports championships due to the pandemic.
Division I will have until August 21 to determine what it will do about its fall sports championships.