The Big East Conference became the latest Division I league to official postpone its 2020 fall season, announcing the decision on Wednesday.
The league will explore options on whether fall sports can be shifted to the spring at a later date.
“This very difficult decision came after an exhaustive review by our Presidents and Athletics Directors and followed consideration of NCAA guidance, COVID-19 case counts and trend lines nationally and in BIG EAST communities, and the many unknowns surrounding testing availability, turnaround time and travel restrictions in our 11 locales,” BIG EAST Commissioner Val Ackerman said in a statement. “We take pride in the high-level competition and experiences we provide to our fall sports student-athletes, and we share their deep disappointment that this will not be a normal year. Our plans for men’s and women’s basketball and other sports are unaffected at this time.”
Teams will be allowed to hold training sessions, strength and conditioning sessions and other activities that are deemed safe and fall within the confines of local regulations.
“The decision to not hold fall sports competition was not made lightly,” Chair of the BIG EAST Board of Directors and Villanova University President the Reverend Peter M. Donohue, OSA, PhD, said in a statement. “Athletics play an integral role in the student, alumni and fan experience at each of our institutions, and we were all hoping to allow the fall seasons to move forward. However, given the guidance of the BIG EAST COVID-19 Task Force, this decision, while disappointing, was made with the health and safety of our student-athletes and staff in mind. The well-being of our community members are, and will continue to be, our priority and focus.”
A total of 16 Division I conferences have now canceled or postponed the 2020 fall soccer season.