High-level conference meetings are being planned for this week across the college football landscape with the expected resolution of postponing fall sports until 2021, multiple sources have told Sports Illustrated.
“It’s gotten to a critical stage,” one conference commissioner told Sports Illustrated Sunday, after a conference call between the heads of the Power 5 conferences. “I think all of us will be meeting with our boards in the coming days. We have work to do that is no fun.”
Dominoes started falling in earnest Saturday when the Mid-American Conference postponed fall sports. The Big Ten followed with an announcement that it was pausing its scheduled progression to full-pads football practices. A well-placed source told SI Saturday, “I think by the end of the week the fall sports will be postponed in all conferences.”
Even that timetable might be accelerated. Sources told SI on Sunday that the Big Ten is moving toward a decision to cancel the 2020 fall season, while engaging other Power 5 conferences on a uniform decision to be announced later this week. An Ohio State spokesman confirmed to The Athletic that the Big Ten presidents are scheduled to meet Sunday night.
Group of 5 league representatives simultaneously were conferring to align their own timelines, a source said.
Both the Pac-12 and Big 12 have calls with league presidents on Tuesday night that might present the first scheduled opportunity for Power 5 leagues to formally vote on postponement. But other calls could be scheduled earlier. There were multiple media reports of a Big Ten presidents call scheduled for Sunday night.
The move toward halting the season comes as a jarring about-face after leagues spent most of the last week finalizing football schedule models and/or releasing schedules. Any momentum toward playing those games was abruptly halted by the MAC’s decision to postpone, citing health and safety concerns for athletics amid the COVID-19 pandemic. That set a precedent that the other nine Football Bowl Subdivision conferences were compelled to follow — and quickly.
“In the next 72 hours college football is going to come to a complete stop,” one industry source said.
Read More News: Sources: Power 5 Conferences Moving Toward Canceling Fall Sports