As the NCAA slowly makes steps toward bringing student-athletes back to campus during the COVID-19 pandemic, the possibility of college football being played this fall goes up. While the NCAA’s decision this week didn’t receive overwhelming support, a new survey shows college football players are happy with it.
In an anonymous poll of college football players conducted by The Athletic’s David Ubben, student-athletes weighed in on their comfort level return to campus. While there is some concern for players regarding their health, the support for the NCAA’s plan was overwhelming.
Nearly 80% of student-athletes who took part in the survey said they were comfortable returning to campus even with their fellow students stuck at home. In fact, on a scale of one-to-five, 36 players voted that they either aren’t worried at all or aren’t overly concerned about getting infected with the coronavirus.
The NCAA’s moratorium on voluntary athletic activities at college facilities will come to an end after May 31. Starting on June 1, student-athletes that play football, men’s basketball and women’s basketball can return to the campus and take part in training. However, the specific date will be up to each school, with the SEC approving to allow workouts on June 8.
While a majority of student-athletes support the measure, it hasn’t received universal approval from coaches. Oklahoma Sooners coach Lincoln Riley blasted schools that planned to bring student-athletes back on June 1.
Notably, 24 of the players surveyed said they would prefer to delay the start of the 2020 season if it was deemed unsafe for fans to attend in September.
Given the enormous financial loss the Power 5 schools would suffer if college football isn’t played, it’s a near certainty that it will happen in the fall. Now, universities must just determine how many fans they can allow in stadiums to ensure everyone’s safety by following social distancing guidelines.