The Big Ten Conference has announced it is postponing the fall 2020 sports season, including all regular-season contests and Big Ten Championships and Tournaments.
Currently, the Big Ten hopes to hold the football season in the spring of 2021, but that decision will have to wait depending on the current state of the coronavirus pandemic in the United States. In addition to football, other sports impacted by this announcement include men’s and women’s cross country, field hockey, men’s and women’s soccer, and women’s volleyball.
As of now, no decision has been made regarding the future of Big Ten’s winter sports season, which includes men’s and women’s basketball.
In a statement on its official website, Big Ten Commissioner Kevin Warren said, “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. 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.”
Warren’s statement continued, “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.”
Warren’s statement concluded, “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.”