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NCAA President suggests college football season could be canceled

College football overtime rules
Jun 5, 2019; Austin, TX, USA; Detailed view of the NCAA logo at the NCAA Track & Field Championships at Mike A. Myers Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

This is news that’s not necessarily too surprising given the nature of the COVID-19 pandemic in the United States right now.

Multiple conferences have already canceled non-conference games heading into the 2020 college football season.

The head of the NCAA, Mark Emmert, is now questioning whether there will be fall sports at all. His statement on Thursday is the clearest indication yet that there might not be a 2020 college football season at all.

NCAA President points to COVID-19 data, suggest college football season could be canceled

“When we made the extremely difficult decision to cancel last spring’s championships it was because there was simply no way to conduct them safely,” NCAA President Mark Emmert, via the governing body’s official website. “This document lays out the advice of health care professionals as to how to resume college sports if we can achieve an environment where COVID-19 rates are manageable. Today, sadly, the data point in the wrong direction. If there is to be college sports in the fall, we need to get a much better handle on the pandemic.”

As much as we want to remain optimistic about the pandemic and the possibility of college football being played this fall, there’s no other way to interpret Emmert’s message. It’s not looking good.

The numbers relating to COVID-19 in the United States paints a bleak picture as it relates to the season starting late next month.

COVID-19 cases in the United States

This country remains the epicenter of the global pandemic. Over the past 24 hours alone (as of publication of this article), the United States registered north of 65,000 new cases.

College football powerhouse states such as California, Texas and Florida have been hit especially hard.

For the NCAA, it all seems to be about student-athlete safety. At this point, it simply makes no sense to start up the college football season and put these young kids at risk. As we have seen, multiple top-end programs have had outbreaks of the virus.

Starting the season with this as the backdrop wouldn’t be the best of ideas. And in reality, the NCAA will have to make a clear decision here within the next couple weeks.