BGSU football will not be playing against Ohio State or Illinois this fall. The Big Ten conference announced on Thursday their decision to limit fall sports, including football, hockey, volleyball and men’s and women’s soccer, to conference play only at this time due to widespread concern over COVID-19.
“This decision was made following many thoughtful conversations over several months between the Big Ten Council of Presidents and Chancellors, Directors of Athletics, Conference Office staff, and medical experts including the Big Ten Task Force for Emerging Infectious Diseases and the Big Ten Sports Medicine Committee,” the statement said.
The release also pointed out the uncertainty of a season at all for fall sports. The conference is prepared not to play and will listen to the advice of medical experts.
A familiar pattern is developing as the Big Ten’s decision comes after Ivy League schools canceled all fall sports and delayed winter sports from starting until after Jan. 1 due to the coronavirus. The Ivy League was the first group of schools to cancel its men’s and women’s basketball postseason tournaments before the rest followed.
With Ohio State and Illinois off the schedule, two non-conference games remain for BGSU in Robert Morris University and Liberty University — which is scheduled to be the fall homecoming game.
No alterations have been made to the BGSU hockey schedule yet, but Ivy League schools Brown, Cornell, Dartmouth, Harvard, Princeton and Yale do play in the ECAC — home of hockey’s season-opening opponent St. Lawrence. If cancelations should grow into the hockey conference, Bowling Green could see its first two games off the schedule.
It is uncertain at this time what will happen to the previously scheduled games that have been canceled. BGSU and Ohio State signed a contract to play this upcoming September back in March of 2017, which asserted that both schools could mutually terminate the contract if the game could not be completed due to unforeseen circumstances.