Of the Power Five Conferences in college football, two have already decided to pack it in for the 2020 season. The Big-Ten and the Pac-Ten have opted out of playing fall sports, leaving the ACC, the Big 12 and the SEC still weighing their options and trying to decide what to do. In addition, big name players such as Trevor Lawrence from Clemson and Chuba Hubbard from Oklahoma State are pushing hard to convince the powers that be to allow them to play this fall. In the meantime, the number of COVID-19 cases and deaths are continuing to rise. For instance, Florida had a record of 276 deaths yesterday. Nationally more than 166,000 people have died from the virus.
There needs to be a consensus among the college football conferences.
Either everybody plays or nobody plays this fall. The Pac-10 and Big-Ten are saying they will play a spring schedule and, if the other three conferences decide to play this fall, how will a national champion be determined? And, if one is crowned there is no way it will be credible. In my humble opinion, I believe the best choice is to play in the spring. If that is indeed what happens an entirely different set of problems will arise.
Say the season begins in February. Basketball is beginning to wind down.....if it actually gets off the ground. Softball, golf, baseball and track are also beginning their seasons and school administrators and sports information personnel will be stressed to the max trying to keep up with all these sports going on at once. Plus, we may need to add more television outlets to fulfill all the contractual obligations. Then again, with the football season ending in May, the student athletes will have just two months off before opening camp for the 2021 season. Only time will tell how that will work.
As we've heard many times before, these are unprecedented times. We've never had to face anything like this before and hopefully we'll never have to face it again. On a positive note, I've noticed more people wearing masks than just a month ago and that's a good sign. But, the picture I saw last week of a crowded North Georgia school hallway full of students wearing no masks was sickening to me. We can't make this virus go away by pretending it doesn't exist. We can't wish it away either. It's not going anywhere until we get a vaccine or unless we take it upon ourselves to do what doctors and scientists tell us to do. Hopefully that will be sooner rather than later.
Randy Smith can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org