Jay LaPrete/Associated Press
Ohio State athletic director Gene Smith acknowledged he’s “ concerned” about the fate of the 2020 college football season amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Smith said Thursday in a conference call with reporters that he had been confident a few months ago about staging a season however that the recent boost in confirmed coronavirus cases has provided him stop briefly:
Patrick Murphy @_Pat_Murphy
Smith admits that he’s “extremely concerned” about Ohio State’s ability to play fall sports. He was very carefully optimistic a few months ago “I’m not even there now.” He stated at one point things were looking positive and now the U.S.’s behavior is among the worst in the world w/ COVID.
The Huge 10 announced it will adopt conference-only schedules for the fall sports season.
In May, Smith informed press reporters Ohio State had checked out strategies in which seating at Ohio Stadium would be restricted for football. The forecasts were as low as 20,000-22,000 with stringent social distancing or as high as 40,000-50,000 with relaxed safety guidelines.
Smith’s tone changed significantly Thursday.
With the Big Ten’s announcement, other FBS conferences will likely follow suit. Arena’s Brett McMurphy and The Athletic’s Bruce Feldman reported the ACC is intending on a conference-only sports schedule as well, with the possible exception of keeping Notre Dame games in the fold.
The Huge 10 likewise appeared to leave open the possibility of the postponement or cancellation of fall sports when it stated the conference-only format will be made use of “if the conference is able to take part.”
As Smith mentioned, the original belief was that the United States would flatten its curve of brand-new coronavirus cases to lead the way for sports this fall, just like what has taken place in Europe with the return of significant soccer leagues.
However, pandemic numbers are as soon as again trending upward across the nation.
According to Johns Hopkins University, the U.S. has verified a little bit more than 3 million cases, with 58,600 brand-new cases reported Wednesday.