Players, parents, and now the President of the United States.
Trump has been active on social media in regards to the Big Ten’s decision to postpone the fall sports’ season. He recently went a step further and discussed the possibility of a fall season with Big Ten commissioner Kevin Warren. According to Trump’s Twitter account, the conversation went well.
Had a very productive conversation with Kevin Warren, Commissioner of the Big Ten Conference, about immediately starting up Big Ten football. Would be good (great!) for everyone - Players, Fans, Country. On the one yard line!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 1, 2020
“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.”
On August 11, the Big Ten announced that it would be postponing the fall sports’ season. The Pac-12 quickly followed with an announcement of their own. According to Adam Rittenberg of ESPN, the Pac-12 has not heard from the White House regarding their decision.
The outrage caused by the Big Ten’s decision has been passionate and is coming from all angles. There have been parents sending letters to Warren. Ohio State quarterback Justin Fields has created a petition and the Nebraska football team has even filed a lawsuit against the conference. Since the lawsuit, the Big Ten has provided more transparency.
Big Ten presidents and chancellors voted 11-3 to postpone the fall college football season, Nicole Auerbach of The Athletic reported on Monday. Nebraska, Iowa, and Ohio State were the three votes in favor of playing in the fall. The vote was one-sided so is the Big Ten really “on the one yard line” like Trump stated in his tweet above?
On Friday, Jeff Potrykus of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported that the Big Ten was looking into starting their football season Thanksgiving weekend. There have been no announcements made on when the season will start.
All of this is happening the week after Austin Peay and Central Arkansas kicked off the college football season. The SEC, Big 12, and ACC Are the three Power 5 conference that are moving forward with their fall football season. It is unknown what will happen next with the Big Ten but now that Trump is involved, it could move quickly.
“The Big Ten Conference and it’s 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,” stated in the Big Ten’s statement regarding their conversation with the White House.