Conference officials released the news on Wednesday and plan to reevaluate the fate of their fall sports teams at a future, undetermined date.
Back in March, the Ivy League was the first Division I basketball conference to cancel its conference tournament. The league made the right call and was ahead of the curve of the impending coronavirus outbreak. Now, the league may have initiated another trailblazing decision by canceling its fall sports season, becoming the first Division I conference to call off its football season.
Football is a cash cow for universities around the country, with some programs surpassing $100 million in revenue over the course of their respective seasons, according to Business Insider. A decision such as what the Ivy League Council of Presidents made on July 8 was not made based on finances, but on the health and safety of its student-athletes.
The COVID-19 pandemic is experiencing an alarming second wave heading into the dog days of summer, with major upticks in daily new cases being seen around the West and South regions of the country. With the Ivy League consisting of teams in the Northeast making this monumental decision, it shows the damning truth of the trajectory that our country is heading towards as universities plan to reopen in the fall.
Football is by far the most populated sport in terms of players and personnel. Coupled with the fact that physical contact and close proximity are inevitable on the football field, the sport becomes a recipe for disaster amidst the coronavirus pandemic. It’s a big announcement for the sport and will likely signal the beginning of subsequent similar decisions for other conferences regarding their respective football seasons.