The 2020 college football season is scheduled to start this weekend, but the Big Ten Conference will be watching from the sidelines.
The Big Ten was the first major FBS conference to announce its intentions to sit out the season in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite arguments from a few teams, Big Ten Commissioner Kevin Warren announced the cancelation of the fall football season in August. Players and families have recently spoken out against Warren and expressed their interest in playing this year, but it hasn’t amounted to much.
Now, a much more powerful figure is attempting to sway Warren into overturning the original decision. President Donald Trump recently spoke to Warren about resuming the Big Ten football season, and he seems confident there will be a change of heart.
The Big Ten Conference canceled its fall football season in August
Just weeks before the 2020 college football season was scheduled to begin, the Big Ten Conference announced it would be canceling its fall season. The conference made the announcement after a meeting between the team’s presidents.
At first, no information was released about how the group came to its decision. Commissioner Kevin Warren took the brunt of the blame for canceling the season, but it not not have have ultimately been his call.
On Monday, it was revealed that 11 of the 14 conference presidents voted to cancel the season during their meeting. The Big Ten commands a 60% vote required to finalize a decision, and the conference reached that threshold easily.
Recently, talks about starting the fall season in September have popped up, but the logistics make little to no sense.
Donald Trump spoke to Kevin Warren Tuesday about resuming the 2020 season
The Big Ten’s decision to cancel fall football didn’t go over well with fans. One of those just happened to be the President of the United States.
President Trump has voiced his opinion on the cancellation via Twitter over the last few weeks. Last Friday, Trump tweeted from his personal account, “Disgraceful that Big Ten is not playing football. Let them PLAY!”
A few days later, he decided to get a bit more proactive. Trump tweeted Tuesday morning that he just spoke to commissioner Warren about resuming the fall season as planned, and he seemed to think it went well.
“Had a very productive conversation with Kevin Warren, Commissioner of the Big Ten Conference, about immediately starting up Big Ten football,” Trump tweeted. “Would be good (great!) for everyone – Players, Fans, Country. On the one yard line!”
Maybe a chat with the leader of the free world will make Warren reconsider the decision.
The Big Ten released a statement about Warren’s phone call with Trump
Almost immediately after President Trump’s tweet, the Big Ten Conference released its own statement about Warren’s chat with the POTUS.
“A White House representative reached out to Big Ten Conference commissioner Kevin Warren on Monday, August 31, 2020 to facilitate a phone call between President Donald J. Trump and Commissioner Warren,” the Big Ten said in a statement. “On Tuesday, September 1, 2020, Commissioner Warren and the President had a productive conversation.
“The Big Ten Conference and its Return to Competition Task Force, on behalf of the Big Ten Council of Presidents and Chancellors (COP/C), are exhausting every resource to help student athletes get back to playing the sports they love, at the appropriate time, in the safest and healthiest way possible.”
Basically, a whole lot of words without much information. The Big Ten football season is still up in the air, but if anyone can make it happen, it’s probably the President of the United States.