Big Ten Reportedly Expected to Vote on Return to Play Within Next 3 Days

Paul KasabianSenior ContributorSeptember 12, 2020

Ohio State wide receiver K.J. Hill (14) holds the trophy following the team's 34=21 win over Wisconsin in the Big Ten championship NCAA college football game, early Sunday, Dec. 8, 2019, in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)
Michael Conroy/Associated Press

The Big Ten's 14 conference chancellors and presidents are expected to vote on a potential return to play football within the next 72 hours, per Pete Thamel of Yahoo Sports.

That reported vote decision occurred after the conference's Return to Competition Task Force presentation "ended successfully [Saturday]," per Thamel.

The presidents and chancellors will begin meeting Sunday to discuss the football season, which is currently postponed through the 2020 calendar year along with all other fall sports amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Big Ten announced that all fall sports would be postponed through the 2020 calendar year on Aug. 11.

"The mental and physical health and welfare of our student-athletes has been at the center of every decision we have made regarding the ability to proceed forward," Big Ten Commissioner Kevin Warren said.

"As time progressed and after hours of discussion with our Big Ten Task Force for Emerging Infectious Diseases and the Big Ten Sports Medicine Committee, it became abundantly clear that there was too much uncertainty regarding potential medical risks to allow our student-athletes to compete this fall."

Much pushback ensued following the Big Ten's decision, with many parents of football players publicly expressing their displeasure. The debate even reached the Oval Office, with President Donald Trump repeatedly calling on the Big Ten to play football.

Now momentum seems to be shifting toward a return to play at some point, but as Nicole Auerbach of The Athletic wrote, there are some factors at play to consider:

Video Play Button
Videos you might like

"The key to all of this will be: Do the Big Ten's presidents and chancellors who initially voted to postpone the season now feel comfortable with advances in (daily/rapid) testing, the ability to contact trace, plans for identifying and treating potential heart issues, etc?"

Auerbach also noted that individual schools could still opt out of playing even if the conference decides to move forward.

Among the Power Five conferences, the Big Ten and Pac-12 made the decision to postpone the seasons, while the Big 12, SEC and ACC started this week.