Will There Be College Football This Fall? Live Coverage

Written by:
Don Shapiro
Published on:

The Big 10 Presidents met Tuesday morning and decided to cancel their football program this fall.  The PAC-12 quickly followed, as was widely expected.  Among the remaining three Power 5 teams, the Big 12 had stayed quiet until throwing their support behind fall football along with the SEC and AAC.  Throwing a monkey wrench into the situation, some Big 10 teams like Nebraska have said they are willing to play elsewhere should the conference cancel.   Come back often for the latest updates

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The ACC and SEC have not altered their plans to play a fall season despite decisions to postpone by the Big Ten and Pac-12 on Tuesday.

In separate statements, the ACC and SEC said they continue to make decisions based on the advice of their own medical advisory groups, along with local and state health guidelines.

More on those two below.

Big 10 Conference Updates

Big Ten Conference presidents and chancellors voted Tuesday to postpone all fall sports seasons, including football, with the hopes of playing in the spring, it announced Tuesday.

"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," Big Ten commissioner Kevin Warren said in a statement. "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.

"We know how significant the student-athlete experience can be in shaping the future of the talented young women and men who compete in the Big Ten Conference. Although that knowledge made this a painstaking decision, it did not make it difficult. While I know our decision today will be disappointing in many ways for our thousands of student-athletes and their families, I am heartened and inspired by their resilience, their insightful and discerning thoughts, and their participation through our conversations to this point. Everyone associated with the Big Ten Conference and its member institutions is committed to getting everyone back to competition as soon as it is safe to do so."

Then some Big 10 team coaches stepped forward to proclaim they were willing to play elsewhere for the season should the conference make such a drastic decision.

Paul Finebaum of ESPN says this is "simply implausible" when you consider that the Big 10 is the richest of the conferences and playing elsewhere for a season that may ultimately end up cancelled anyway "would cost substantial fines".

PAC 12 Conference Updates

As was expected, the PAC 12 quickly followed the Big 10 to postpone football until spring.

Big 12 Conference Updates

Mark this one under "Most Unpredictable".  We don't know where the Big 12 is leaning, or at least we didn't until Tuesday evening.

The Big 12 will continue moving forward with the intent on playing fall football, multiple sources told ESPN on Tuesday, confirming a Yahoo Sports report.

The conference's board of directors met for more than an hour on Tuesday to discuss the future of the season in the midst of the Big Ten and Pac-12 decisions to postpone fall sports until 2021.

ACC Conference Updates

Discussions around the ACC suggests any movement toward cancellation will come independently of other leagues.

ACC athletic directors met Monday morning and did not alter their current plan for the fall season. Practices continued across the league.

"I'm glad our conference is fighting for us," Clemson QB Trevor Lawrence said.  He is among numerous players who are part of the #WeWantToPlay movement. "If we see progress, let's continue to play. If it gets bad, we'll course correct, but right now it's been good, and they owe it to the players to fight for us."

The man leading the ACC medical advisory team said Tuesday he believes college football can be played safely this upcoming season. 

Dr. Cameron Wolfe, a Duke infectious disease specialist, is the chair for the ACC’s medical advisory team. He told Sports Business Daily that COVID-19 can be managed. 

“We believe we can mitigate it down to a level that makes everyone safe,” Wolfe told the Sports Business Daily. “Can we safely have two teams meet on the field? I would say yes. Will it be tough? Yes. Will it be expensive and hard and lots of work? For sure. But I do believe you can sufficiently mitigate the risk of bringing COVID onto the football field or into the training room at a level that’s no different than living as a student on campus.” 

SEC Conference Updates

SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey tweeted out Monday afternoon : "Best advice I've received since COVID-19: 'Be patient. Take time when making decisions. This is all new & you'll gain better information each day.' @SEC has been deliberate at each step since March. ... delayed first game to respect start of fall semester."

On the Dan Patrick Show Tuesday morning, Sankey doubled down.

"Our medical advisory group has said, 'Yes, we can continue to go forward,'" Sankey revealed. "Should that advice change, that would certainly be a stopping point."

Alabama coach Nick Saban told ESPN on Monday that the return of other students to campus would pose a challenge.

"I get that, but we really don't know what that entails until it happens," Saban said. "It's a big reason we pushed the season back [in the SEC], to assess that, which is the prudent way to do it."

- Don Shapiro, Gambling911.com

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