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By Joe Kazmar
For The Record 

2020 College Football Season still up in the air


Last updated 7/28/2020 at 9:03pm

Last week more than two dozen Division I conferences lobbied the NCAA’s highest

governing body to delay a decision on fall football championships until a majority of the leagues

determine whether to even have regular-season competition because of the COVID-19 pandemic,

according to an Associated Press article.

The NCAA Board of Governors agreed that it must continue to thoughtfully and

aggressively monitor health conditions around the country and its implementation of the

pandemic’s guidelines issued last week.

The College Commissioners Association, comprised of commissioners from all 32

Division I conferences sent a letter to the NCAA’s board saying it was “concerned to learn the

board is contemplating taking action soon to cancel all fall season NCAA championships”

because of concerns related to COVID-19, according to the article.

The board’s next meeting is scheduled for Aug. 4 and the CCA’s letter recommended

delaying any decision on fall championships to allow more conferences to make their own

decisions regarding regular-season play.

However, in major college football, the NCAA has no say. The conferences control the

College Football Playoffs and the bowls. The NCAA does sponsor playoffs in the second-tier of

Division I football (FCS) and in Division II and III.

Any college or university that participates in football this fall will see some kind of

financial shortfall for the 2020-2021 school year because of the pandemic.

The ones that will really feel the financial pinch are the smaller Division I schools like

Lamar and McNeese State who depend on large payouts when they play what I call their

“sacrificial lamb” games against larger schools.

These smaller schools generally get crushed on the field but use that huge payday to

finance their sports program for the entire year. This money plus the home game receipts for

football, basketball and sometimes baseball generally fulfill their annual athletic budgets.

The NCAA already shortened its member schools $375 million in scheduled payouts due

to the cancellation of the NCAA Basketball Tournament last spring. Schools have been preparing

for the worst since the spring when the cancellation of the tourney resulted in a drop of

distributed revenue from $600 million to around $225 million.

Among the conferences that have already decided to postpone fall sports with the hope of

making them up in the second semester include the Ivy League, the Patriot League, the

Southwestern Athletic Conference, the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference and the Colonial

Athletic Conference.

“The top 10 FBS conferences in Division I football’s top tier are in the process of

adjusting schedules and hoping to play a regular season that has billions of dollars in media

rights deals attached to it,” the article states.

“The hope among college sports leaders is that the pandemic can be better controlled

across the country before they must make a final call on fall sports seasons, which is about a

month away from scheduled starts,” the article concluded.

KWICKIES…I remember way back when I was wearing a crewcut and covering the

West Orange Chiefs, the big man on the campus (especially on the football field) was Butch

Campbell, who was a scoring machine from his halfback position. A few years later Butch

became the became the “big man” on the Lamar Orange campus, beginning his tenure with the

Physical Education Department and later becoming Director of Security. Forty-four years later

Butch hung it up for good with his well-deserved retirement. Now he’s like the rest of us—just a

big man.

NFL players have been warned of high-risk activities involving more than 15 people and

can be disciplined for actions away from their training facility.

After concluding a three-game weekend series at Philadelphia, the Miami Marlins had 12

players and two coaches who tested positive for COVID-19. And because so many Marlins

players were quarantined in Philadelphia, Monday’s home opener against the Baltimore Orioles

was postponed. The Phillies’ game against the New York Yankees was also postponed so the

Philadelphia players can be tested and the visitor’s clubhouse could be fumigated.

Michael Thompson won the PGA Tour 3M Open with a two-stroke victory with birdies

on two of the final three holes. Runner-up was Adam Long with 267. It was the second career

win for Thompson, who pocketed $1.188 million for his effort.

And closer to home involving another Michael, former West Orange-Stark star Michael

Arnaud, had his best tournament of the year by tying for second place in the Korn Ferry Tour

Price Cutter Charity Championship presented by Dr. Pepper. Michael had rounds of 66-65-

70—201 to finish in a three-way tie for second place.

I remember not too long ago when a team would have one or maybe two offensive

linemen who weighed over 300 pounds. If you look at the Houston Texans’ 16 players trying to

make this season’s roster as offensive linemen, only two were UNDER 300 pounds, and their

weights were 295 and 296.

In an effort to find a player to replace former All-Pro safety Earl Thomas III, the Seattle

Seahawks had to give up their next two first-round draft picks to sign Jamal Adams. It would

have been so much easier and much cheaper too if the Seahawks merely extended Earl’s contract

last season like he wanted and maybe would have gone somewhere in the 2019 NFL Playoffs.

JUST BETWEEN US…The Houston Astros had big innings in the middle of their first

three games which resulted in two wins and a blown save by their bullpen Sunday. But all news

wasn’t good after ace Justin Verlander won the season’s opener Friday. He left the game after

only 73 pitches with tightness in his right elbow which could very well spell the end of the

season for the game’s active strikeout king.


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