By Adam Brown
The NCAA announced on Thursday there will be no fall NCAA championships due to COVID-19.
NCAA President Mark Emmert released a statement on Twitter.
“We cannot, at this point, have fall NCAA Championships,” Emmert said. “Because not enough schools participating. The Board of Governors said if you don’t have half of your schools playing a sport you can’t have a ligament championship.”
This week two of the Power Five conferences, the Big Ten and Pac-12, announced that they have canceled fall sports until spring. Several other conferences and universities such as UCONN, the Ivy League, the Mid-American Conference, the Mountain West Conference, Old Dominion (out of Conference USA), UMASS and New Mexico State have also canceled.
“So we can’t give any Division 1 NCAA sport a championship,” Emmert said. “Which is anything other than FBS football which goes on in the fall. So tragically that is going to be the case this fall full stop.”
Emmert’s and staff have been talking to all 32 commissioners to come up with a way for a championship for winter and spring student-athletes.
“We can figure this out,” Emmert said. “Schools and conferences want to move forward as more than have of them want to do it that is the indication as of now. Let’s do it.
“Using the fall to keep kids healthy through coaches and their athletic department’s focus on their academic success, work with them and let them practice and stay ready to play,” Emmert said.
When the COVID-19 pandemic hit the nation in March the NCAA canceled all championships. March Madness men’s and women’s basketball, College World Series baseball and softball track championships were all canceled.
“The highest priority has to go to the winter and spring sports cause they lost their championship last March,” Emmert said. “We made that awful necessary choice to shut down… going to protect those spaces. As we look at it and modify the model shrink the brackets do everything in predetermined sites, not running kids around the country. With bubbles or semi-bubble models like in volleyball or soccer, there is a way to do it. Would it be normal of course not as you play fall sports in the spring with schedules and everything.”