SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey talks concerns surrounding 2020 college football season (Photo by USAToday Sports)
Less than a month away from the point of no return, college football fans are now having to face the grim, stone cold reality of no college football in the fall. That very likely means no college football at all in 2020, because as fun as a spring season is to talk about, it just isn’t very feasible.
SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey was a guest Saturday morning on Marty and McGee on ESPN Radio and addressed concerns surrounding the 2020 college football season. He was frank, and made it a point to mention the fact that politicizing advice from the medical community is a big part of why we are where we are today.
“The direct reality is not good,” Sannkey said. “And the notion that we’ve politicized medical guidance of distancing, and breathing masks, and hand sanitization, ventilation of being outside, being careful where you are in buildings. There’s some very clear advice about — you can’t mitigate and eliminate every risk, but how do you minimize the risk? We are running out of time to correct and get things right, and as a society we owe it to each other to be as healthy as we can be.”
However, time has not run out. There are still a few more weeks before decisions have to start being made. The fact that the B1G and PAC-12 have already made those decisions earlier than they needed to do so is a little perplexing, and also a good sign that the rest of the Power-5 conferences will eventually do the same thing.
“That literally is playing out in front of us every day,” Sankey said. “That’s why I don’t feel any pressure because of somebody else’s decisions. We’re trying to make the right decisions for us, for the Southeastern Conference. It does have an impact because I’ve said publicly we’re all linked nationally, so when other people make decisions, yup, there’s an impact, but also we’re going to look at our situation and make a decision that’s appropriate for the Southeastern Conference and most importantly for the health of our student-athletes.”
Sankey also points out that there is still time to reverse the trends and that the SEC, as is the case with the ACC and likely the BIG-12, will wait as long as possible before having to make any calls.
“What I’ve tried to do is both keep a focus on what’s ahead but provide reality, which has been I’m going to focus on preparing to play the season as scheduled but acknowledge the circumstances around coronavirus are going to guide us in that decision-making,” Sankey said. “And the reality right now is the trends in our region, in our nation, are not in the positive direction for being able to have normal experiences.”