While Pac-12 football coaches have presented an NCAA-mandated start-of-season uniform, some of California’s latest coronavirus plans have further confused the way college teams will return to play in the West.
Washington coach Jimmy Lake said in a videoconference with reporters on Tuesday that he would prefer all the big college teams to start six weeks of preparation for the season at the same time.
“I think it would be great if the NCAA established a general rule for the whole country by the time we started, and I understand that some states may be less affected by this than most. And I’m sure there will be different opinions on this, “said Lake. “In my opinion, I think the NCAA should step in and say, ‘OK, here’s the date when everyone can start. “”
Colorado coach Karl Dorrell and Utah’s Kyle Whittingham supported Lake’s idea. To start the season on Labor Day weekend, when Washington is scheduled to host Michigan, teams should begin six weeks of conditioning and training in mid-July.
A Los Angeles County public health official said on Tuesday, according to the Los Angeles Times, that the county’s home care order is expected to last until July. This could leave Pac-12 USC and UCLA members waiting at least August before starting to prepare.
In addition, the chancellor of the California State University system said that he expects the vast majority of courses on the system’s 23 campuses to be delivered online in the fall. Shortly after this announcement, the California College Athletic Association, an NCAA Division II conference, suspended its fall sports season.
None of the Pac-12 schools are part of the California State University system, but the State of San Jose, the State of San Diego, and the State of Fresno are all FBS schools competing in the Mountain West.
The presidents of these three schools and Mountain West commissioner Craig Thompson then released a joint statement.
“Certainly, all conversations are led by academics, as well as public health and safety. In this context, more determinations are necessary. The three institutions will work closely with Mountain West. No decision on athletics has been made. “
Some schools in the CSU system, such as Sacramento State and Cal Poly, compete at FCS, second level of Division I.
The California Pac-12 and UCLA schools are part of the University of California system.
University sports leaders, including NCAA President Mark Emmert, have said that university athletes cannot return to campuses that are not open to the rest of the student body. What exactly constitutes an open campus has not been defined.
The NCAA does not have much authority over major college football. Conferences take the lead when it comes to how and when the season will start, with the Power Five commissioners in the foreground.
Emmert told ESPN on Tuesday that the NCAA will not impose a start date for the football season, as state and local officials will direct these decisions.
Even Emmert agreed that it is probably not realistic to expect that 130 major college football schools in 41 states – all taking different approaches to tackling COVID-19 – will be able to start competing at the same time.
“I think there should be a general start as to when this six-week process or whatever time it takes to prepare for your season (begins). I think the NCAA should govern this, “said Dorrell, the former UCLA coach who took over in Colorado on February 23.
Whittingham has agreed that the start of the season will be consistent and that all teams should have the same minimum time to prepare. He also said he would not like athletes in certain states where the restrictions have been relaxed to be prohibited from participating in certain training and coached training.
“There are imbalances and inequalities in all areas in the NCAA, in terms of facilities, bases of recruitment,” said Whittingham. “Nothing matters when you really look, and so I would hate to see athletes sitting right around you that you could train and prepare for the season just because other places are not quite there yet point. “
Knowing that the season could be delayed or disrupted by the pandemic, conferences and schools are studying all kinds of emergency plans.
USC coach Clay Helton said Monday that the Pac-12 has talked about playing an 11-game all-conference football schedule if necessary, but that any decision on what the next season will look like is still weeks to be taken.
“I think where we are is the definition of a fluid situation,” Stanford coach David Shaw said on Monday.
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