So, in case you happened to be on vacation in New Zealand or was on one of SpaceX’s recon missions off the planet, I’m going to assume you saw that the Big 10 (and subsequently the Pac 12) suddenly decided to
cancel delay their fall football seasons without giving warning to the other conferences. Here was our own announcement on RBR yesterday.
“The mental and physical health and welfare of our student-athletes has been at the center of every decision we have made regarding the ability to proceed forward,” Big Ten Commissioner Kevin Warren said. “As time progressed and after hours of discussion with our Big Ten Task Force for Emerging Infectious Diseases and the Big Ten Sports Medicine Committee, it became abundantly clear that there was too much uncertainty regarding potential medical risks to allow our student-athletes to compete this fall.
There’s all kinds of drama that unfolded to unpack, including rampant bad journalism, blue-check media heads on Twitter having to delete tweets, and plenty of arguing that, if you’re interested, you’ll just have to do some Twitter browsing.
The main question being asked, though, is “what changed?”
A week ago, the B1G was all gung ho and had released an all-conference schedule (just like everyone else) and had all kinds of preventative measures being drafted to be put in place.
Now, the commissioner states that “science came at him fast” as the reasoning. I assume that he’s talking about the recent talking point about Covid affecting those with enlarged hearts— which is prevalent in football players. Of course, that’s been studied in relation to Covid since May, and has been a known complication of any virus since, I dunno, the 70s?
Regardless, it’s clear the other conferences weren’t consulted first, and the B1G seems to have been planning this for a few weeks already and had just been playing along with the discussions with the SEC, ACC, and Big 12.
Even more fun is that they’ve left it open by saying they’ve “delayed” the season. As if playing in the spring isn’t going to be a logistical impossibility. Roster management? Conflicting with the NFL Draft? Grad Transfers? Oh and then what do you do with early enrollees? Kick them all down the road.... Or do they get a free extra season of practice?
And that’s all before you delve into the player safety aspect of playing back-to-back football seasons in the spring and then the fall.
No, the Big 10 is not going to play football this spring. If they cancel now, it’s done for the year. Don’t let them fool you into softening the blow by pretending there’s still a chance.
The ACC released its statement first, saying it would “continue to follow medical advice” regarding COVID-19, while also staying “flexible” as “medical information and the landscape evolves.”
A few minutes later came a statement from SEC commissioner Greg Sankey, who noted that he was interested in hearing more about why the Big Ten and Pac-12 made the decisions they did. Sankey remains “comfortable with the thorough and deliberate approach” by the conference and its member schools regarding COVID-19 protocols.
Anyway, the ACC and SEC had to scramble, but quickly released their statement on their intent to continue on with the plan. The Big 12 stayed silent for much of the day, but announced that they fall in the same camp as the SEC and ACC late yesterday evening.
Feel free to debate away on the subject. I’m not well-read or opinionated enough to opine any more on this subject of cancellations, so I’ll leave it here.
Meanwhile, Nick Saban managed to pull in the GOAT of GOATS, Michael Jordan, to speak to the Alabama Football team at the exact same time the rest of college football was imploding.
Getting Michael Jordan to speak like this isn’t easy. I’m going to leave this right here. pic.twitter.com/oCek9zPwOh— Aaron Suttles (@AaronSuttles) August 11, 2020
3D chess, man.
In fact, guess who happened to decommit from a notable B1G team, Ohio State today? Tunmise Adeleye, the #30 overall player by the 247 Composite and a 5-star defensive end by Rivals.com.
“First and foremost, I would like to thank Coach Johnson and the rest of the Ohio State staff for taking me in as one of their own since the day that I committed,” Adeleye said on his Twitter account. “Ohio State has always been a dream of mine and I can’t thank the staff enough for believing in my abilities and rewarding me with a scholarship offer. The experience has been nothing but a good one and I have nothing but love for coach Johnson on my end. However, with that being said, I feel it’s best for me to De-commit from Ohio State at this time. The decision to attend a university is a life-altering one and I believe it’s in my best interest to sit back and carefully re-evaluate all options at hand.”
Adeleye has often been brought up in recruiting circles as someone Alabama has as a top priority recruit, and is now probably the team to beat. Texas A&M is close to his hometown though, and he also has stated his interest in Florida.
Finally, get excited.
Former Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa is set to be the subject of a documentary from Fox Sports Films, according to a report from Variety. Part of Fox Sports Films’ MAGNIFY series, it will be titled “Tua” and will “delve into the past year of Tagovailoa’s life,” where the Crimson Tide star worked to overcome a season-ending injury before being drafted by the Miami Dolphins. The documentary will also focus on his childhood in Ewa Beach, Hawaii.
“Tua” will debut Sunday, Sept. 6, at 3 p.m. CT on Fox. In addition to the documentary, an eight-episode digital series, “Tua Talks,” will launch on the Fox Sports app in the coming weeks.
Tua Tagovailoa is having a documentary released in September detailing his journey from what many assumed was about to be a career-ending injury to a #5 overall draft pick and the chance to even be playing in week 1 of the NFL season.
The dude knows how to market his #brand, that’s for sure. He’ll make enough money off of this, his rookie contract, and other sponsorships that even if his hip injury never allows him to be the elite QB he is in the pros, he’ll be set for life.