Scott Frost: Nebraska Ready to Explore 'Other Options' If Big Ten Cancels Season

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistAugust 10, 2020

Nebraska head coach Scott Frost participates in a news conference on the first day of NCAA college football spring practice, in Lincoln, Neb., Monday, March 9, 2020. (AP Photo/Nati Harnik)
Nati Harnik/Associated Press

Nebraska Cornhuskers head coach Scott Frost told reporters the team would explore other options to play in 2020 if the Big Ten cancels the season.

Husker Sports @HuskerSports

"Our University is committed to playing no matter what, no matter what that looks like and how that looks. We want to play no matter who it is or where it is." #Huskers HC Scott Frost on opponents for 2020. https://t.co/kTPN9znv0v

The Detroit Free Press reported Monday that 12 of the Big Ten's 14 schools voted to cancel the season, with Nebraska and Iowa the lone dissenters, though the conference has denied that any such vote took place. 

Dan Patrick Show @dpshow

DP was told an hour ago that the Big 10 and Pac 12 will cancel their football seasons tomorrow... The ACC and the Big 12 are on the fence.. And the SEC is trying to get teams to join them for a season. Watch live: https://t.co/sMaeXQkLfl https://t.co/oSUNGMTEqw

Frost also argued Nebraska would lose substantial money if the season was canceled and said he believes the players would be safer within the football program than away from it:

Adam Rittenberg @ESPNRittenberg

Scott Frost says #Nebraska estimates $80-120 million hit if there's no football season. "The biggest factor is if we don't play football, we're not going to be able to pay for anything here until we start making money again."

Mitch Sherman @mitchsherman

Frost: "The virus is here either way. And I would contend that our players are safer here."

Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence made a similar argument regarding player safety, though it's fair to question if a football program with hundreds of players, coaches and staff members—traveling around the country—would in fact remain medically responsible once the school year resumed:

Will Graves @WillGravesAP

So uhhh, college football coaches understand that their solid test C-19 test results during a period when THE CAMPUS OF 25-30K STUDENTS IS EMPTY is not indicative of how it might go when the campus is even half full, right?

Frost wasn't the only Big Ten coach to advocate for the season being held Monday:

Ryan Day @ryandaytime

Swinging as hard as we possibly can right now for these players!! This isn’t over! #FIGHT

Tom VanHaaren @TomVH

Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh released a statement on why he’s advocating they play football this season citing recent numbers and protocols followed https://t.co/8SBHPlSlQv

Monday's report that the Big Ten might cancel its college football season sent shockwaves around the sport, and it remains possible that other conferences could follow suit.

Even some professional sports that have the full array of resources to ensure a safe return to play have already experienced issues. While the NBA, NHL and MLS have resumed game action with minimal to no positive cases in recent testing cycles, Major League Baseball has seen the Miami Marlins and St. Louis Cardinals experience inter-organizational outbreaks that have forced a number of game postponements. 

Further, athletes in those sports who choose to play are making hundreds of thousands or millions of dollars to do so. Asking unpaid college athletes to take on any potential medical risks is far more ethically dubious.