UPDATE: Big Ten cancels fall football season, other conferences could follow.
WASHINGTON (WLNS) – Vice President Mike Pence has joined the president in advocating for college football to return.
“It’s important for student-athletes, schools, and our Nation,” tweeted Pence just after 8 p.m.
He added that “they deserve the chance to safely get back on the field”
America needs College Football! It’s important for student-athletes, schools, and our Nation. These Great athletes have worked their whole lives for the opportunity compete on the college gridiron and they deserve the chance to safely get back on the field! #WeWantToPlay 🏈🇺🇸— Mike Pence (@Mike_Pence) August 11, 2020
President Donald Trump on Monday joined a number of coaches calling to save the college football season from a pandemic-forced shutdown as supporters pushed the premise that the players are safer because of their sport.
There was speculation two of the five most powerful conferences — the Big Ten and the Pac-12 — might call off their fall seasons and explore the possibility of spring football.
The Mountain West became the second conference in the NCAA’s Football Bowl Subdivison to do just that, joining the Mid-American Conference in giving up hope on playing any sports in the fall. Farther east, Old Dominion canceled fall sports, too, becoming the first school in college football’s highest tier to break from its league; the rest of Conference USA was going forward with plans to play.
A Big Ten spokesman said no votes on fall sports had been taken by its presidents and chancellors as of Monday afternoon, and the powerful Southeastern Conference made clear it was not yet ready to shutter its fall season.
A growing number of athletes have spoken out about saving the season, with Clemson star quarterback Trevor Lawrence among a group posting to Twitter with the hashtag “WeWantToPlay.” Trump threw his support behind them Monday.
Earlier in the day, President Trump tweeted, “Play College Football!”
Play College Football!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 10, 2020