The coronavirus fallout continues.
College football underwent seismic changes on Tuesday when the Big Ten and Pac-12 announced the postponement of all 2020-21 fall sports.
Big Ten Commissioner Kevin Warren said the welfare of the conference’s student-athletes was the primary motivator for the Big Ten’s decision.
“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 … it became abundantly clear that there was too much uncertainty regarding potential medical risks to allow our student-athletes to compete this fall.”
The shocking announcement came a day after rumors surfaced that Big Ten higher-ups were meeting to discuss the postponement of the college football season.
As the sports world comes to grips with the new reality, Florida college football fans are on high alert.
Are the SEC and ACC next? Maybe not.
The common theory among college sports fans and reporters was that conferences would fall like dominoes if a Power Five conference postponed the fall season.
However, that doesn’t seem to be the case yet.
In an interview with The Dan Patrick Show on Tuesday, Southeastern Conference Commissioner Greg Sankey said the SEC wouldn’t give in.
“Our medical advisory group has said, ‘Yes, we can continue to go forward,'” Sankey said. “Should that advice change, that would certainly be a stopping point.”
Yahoo Sports reporter Pete Thamel indicated Tuesday that the ACC has no plans to postpone their fall sports either.
An ACC source told me today: “We’re further away from pulling out now than we were a few days ago. I think we’re more steady in the boat in sticking with our plan. Given the conditions of COVID, we know that can change quickly.” 1/2
— Pete Thamel (@PeteThamel) August 11, 2020
The conference released a statement later that day that reinforced its commitment to listening to medical professionals and implementing measures to protect the health and safety of its students and staff.
Florida Gators updates
The most notable COVID-related news out of the University of Florida camp came Monday. Coach Dan Mullen indicated in a tweet that his players want the season to go on.
Mullen expressed his pride in his players, then concluded the tweet with #WeWantToPlay:
“(Our players) commitment to medical guidelines to stay safe has showed their resolve in preparing the right way for the season. They deserve to play this fall. They have worked so hard for this. Let’s fight for them and find a way.”
Florida State Seminoles updates
Briggs was one of two players who opted out of the season a week ago, but Briggs’ name wasn’t revealed until this week. The other player foregoing his season is defensive end Jamarcus Chatman.
Head coach Mike Norvell told Noles 247 that he respected the players’ decisions.
“Developing into a man is about making decisions, making choices. Those two young men have chose to sit out this year. And as an administration, we are fully supporting them and they have their scholarship, they’re going to continue with their education. Once again, it is a choice.”
Miami Hurricanes updates
While there hasn’t been recent news of players opting out, players are speaking up.
A slew of University of Miami football players have tweeted their desire to play this season.
For example, tight end Brevin Jordan tweeted this past weekend:
So much work has been put in. So much adversity has been overcome bc of the game we love. #WeWantToPlay
— B r e v i n J o r d a n (@Brevinjordan) August 10, 2020
Quarterback Deriq King tweeted a statement from players from all Power Five conferences. The statement includes several demands:
“Establish universal mandated health & safety procedures and protocols to protect college-athletes against COVID-19 among all conferences throughout the NCAA.”