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Big Ten leaning toward cancellation

Big Ten leaning toward cancellation

Lori Schmidt

Note: This story has been updated to reflect the most recent reporting from the Detroit Free Press.

Multiple reports indicate it is unlikely there will be Big Ten football this fall due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

University presidents and chancellors from conference schools spoke for a second straight day Sunday. After missing Saturday’s regularly-scheduled call, Ohio State president-elect Kristina Johnson participated in the critical follow-up call that was necessitated by Saturday’s conversation. 


“Sources have indicated that there’s an expectation that the league will arrive at a decision to cancel fall sports,” said Yahoo! Sports.

The Detroit Free Press went a step further, saying that there was a 12-2 vote in favor of cancellation, although a conference spokesman denied this.

ESPN added that the Big Ten is about ready to announce they’ve pulled the plug but first want “to gauge if commissioners and university presidents and chancellors from the other Power 5 conferences — the ACC, Big 12, Pac-12 and SEC — will fall in line with them.”

That call, however, comes as a number of Buckeye players have shared a message via Twitter expressing strong support for the way OSU is managing the pandemic. 

They followed up their message by later sending out tweets hashtagged #WeWantToPlay, and the group Football Parents At Ohio State released a statement of their own Sunday night. 

Should the Big Ten decide to cancel the fall season, they would follow the Mid American Conference, which called off fall sports on Saturday with the aim of playing them in the spring, and UConn, a college football independent, which made their announcement on Wednesday. 

Big Ten players Rondale Moore (Purdue), Micah Parsons (Penn State), Jordan Reid, (Michigan State), Rashod Bateman (Minnesota), and Josh Jackson (Maryland) are among those who have already indicated they plan to sit out the year regardless of what the league has planned.

Stay tuned to or follow @LoriSchmidt on Twitter for more updates on Ohio State football, Blue Jackets hockey, and Crew soccer.

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