Big Ten season still up in air
As the Big Ten season seems one day closer to official cancellation due to the coronavirus, conflicting reports persist.
A published report appeared Monday morning in the Detroit Free Press that the Big Ten football season will be canceled, which was followed by a report on the Dan Patrick Radio Show that the conference voted 12-2 in favor of canceling fall sports.
An unnamed Big Ten spokesman, however, disputed that, telling CBS Sports, “No vote has been held by our presidents and chancellors.”
According to Patrick’s sources, Nebraska and Iowa were the two schools that voted not to cancel.
Yahoo Sports reported an announcement could come today.
Several Big Ten coaches, including Penn State’s James Franklin, expressed support of his players, many of whom have expressed the desire to play.
“I love our players and believe it is my responsibility to help them chase their dreams, both collectively and individually,” Franklin wrote on Twitter at 3 p.m. Monday. “I am willing to fight WITH them & for our program!”
Ohio State coach Ryan Day and Michigan’s Jim Harbaugh expressed similar messages, but Nebraska’s Scott Frost was the most outspoken.
“Our players want to play. Our coaches want to coach,” Frost said, adding Nebraska would take a “$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.”
Dianne Freiermuth, mother of Penn State standout Pat Freiermuth, posted a letter on Twitter on behalf of the Penn State Parents Association that urged the Big Ten to play this fall.
She said the players are regularly tested and have practiced appropriate protocols, and she has “full trust” in Penn State’s administration and coaches.
Many of the Nittany Lions, along with players around the country, have continued to express their desire to play the season.
The Free Press reported that Big Ten commissioner Kevin Warren prefers the season take place this spring.
President Trump joined in the Twitter support, saying, “The student-athletes have been working too hard for their season to be canceled.”