Big Ten Will Return to Play Football in October, Each Team Will Play 8 Games

Big Ten football is coming again this fall. On Wednesday morning, the conference announced its plan to back to play next month, which incorporates rigorous testing protocols. The season is ready to kick off the weekend of Oct. 23-24, and each team will play 8 games.

Big Ten university presidents and chancellors got here to the decision after a lot of days of mulling over fall sports activities amid COVID-19 spikes at colleges around the nation.

“Our focus with the Task Force over the last six weeks was to ensure the health and safety of our student-athletes. Our goal has always been to return to the competition so all student-athletes can realize their dream of competing in the sports they love,” Big Ten Commissioner Kevin Warren mentioned in a press release. “We are incredibly grateful for the collaborative work that our Return to Competition Task Force has accomplished to ensure the health, safety, and wellness of student-athletes, coaches and administrators.”

The Big Ten's plan consists of a mandatory day by day testing for anybody who's on the field during games and practices, akin to student-athletes, coaches, and trainers. The test results should be completed earlier than all games and practices, and anybody who assessments optimistic would require a polymerase chain response test to verify the outcomes.

If student-athletes take a look at positive, they will be evaluated for cardiac analysis earlier than returning. At a minimum, players must wait 21 days from the date of a positive COVID-19 diagnosis earlier than rejoining the team to play.

(Image Credit - The New York Times)

Everyday testing is scheduled to begin by Sept. 30.

Every faculty will designate an employee member to oversee the collection and reporting of check outcomes to the conference, and team test positivity charges and inhabitants positivity fee thresholds will guide recommendations for practice and competition, the release stated.

A situation that might permit individual faculties to opt-out was among the many items mentioned during the return-to-play conferences, a source told the Associated Press. There was no mention of an opt-out clause in the Big Ten's official announcement on Wednesday(16 September).

In the meantime, Dr. Bradley Nelson, medical director for Gopher Athletics on the University of Minnesota, mentioned the university's sports activities medicine team "has worked with the other medical professionals in the Big Ten to develop protocols that now allow the safe return of football."

"Additionally, the university stated Director of Athletics Mark Coyle has had daily conversations with league athletic directors and head coaches as the Massive Ten Conference continued conversations about a return to play".

"I support to restart the Big Ten football season," University of Minnesota President Joan Gabel stated in a statement. "The health and safety of our student-athletes and the community that surrounds them was and has always been our top priority. We have continued to listen to medical professionals and follow their expert advice during the past month. With the additional research, enhanced safety protocols, and a commitment to work closely together as a conference on research and safety for student-athletes, we are now ready to play football."

The conference mentioned it'll provide an update on other fall and winter sports activities in the close to future.

The Big Ten postponed its fall season Aug. 11 due to considerations about playing via the COVID-19 pandemic, with presidents and chancellors voting 11-3 in favor. Ohio State, Iowa, and Nebraska voted towards postponement.

The Big 12 and Atlantic Coast Conference started play last weekend, and the Southeastern Conference is set to play starting Sept. 26. If the Big Ten goes forward with its season, the Pac-12 will stay the only Power 5 conference holding out on its football season.

News Source - The New York Times, ESPN, KSTP