MAC Commissioner Explains Decision to Cancel 2020 Football Season

The Mid-American Conference (MAC) became the first major conference to announce it was postponing fall sports amid the coronavirus pandemic. The conference announced its decision to postpone the season with the hope of playing games in the spring.

Now, MAC commissioner Jon Steinbrecher is expanding on the MAC’s decision to postpone the games which came after meetings with a medical advisory board.

“We’ve been talking days on end, weeks on end about what we’re dealing with, and can we proceed safely? Leaning heavily on our medical advisory group, our sports medicine group and staying in constant contact with our presidents, our ADs,” Steinbrecher said, as transcribed by 247 Sports. “…We’re coming up on a timeframe where you’re getting ready for the start of, what would be, the traditional fall camp for football if you’re gonna kick off on Labor Day weekend, or volleyball, whatever the sport may be. So, some determinations on whether or not it’s appropriate to proceed or not. Or if we do proceed, do we change or alter it is what we’re doing? Or in our case, do we decide we’re going to postpone when we might start the season? An array of things like that. What we kept coming back to from our medical advisors is we did not feel comfortable proceeding any further.

“…Our medical advisory board was unequivocal. Not at all. They said, ‘Jon, we don’t see a way for you to play this fall.’”

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While the decision is disappointing for many, players from the conference applauded Steinbrecher for putting the safety of the student-athletes first while also urging him to use the next few months to put additional protocols in place.

“While we are disappointed by the loss of our fall competitive seasons, we applaud our leaders for prioritizing our health and safety,” the statement read. “Moving forward we want to make sure this does not equate to the loss of eligibility for our athletes. As the spring approaches we call on Commissioner Jon Steinbrecher to use the coming months to develop uniformed protocols and guidelines to avoid a similar scenario for our spring athletes. #MACUNITED #SPRINGINTOMACTION”

It will be interesting to see whether other conferences follow suit in the coming weeks. Most recently, there have been conflicting reports about the future of the Big Ten season, so we will all have to buckle up for what will be an interesting and crucial time for college football.

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