Big Ten Announces All Football Teams to Remain in Acclimatization Period

Ohio State football practice helmets

COLUMBUS – All football teams will remain in the acclimatization period until further notice, the Big Ten Conference announced on Saturday.

This means that only helmets are allowed for football workouts and teams will not yet move forward with padded football practices.

You can read the full release below.

The Big Ten Conference announced today, based on the advice and counsel of the Big Ten Task Force for Emerging Infectious Diseases and the Big Ten Sports Medicine Committee, that, until further notice, all institutions will remain in the first two days of the acclimatization period in football (i.e., helmets shall be the only piece of protective equipment student-athletes may wear) as we continue to transition prudently through preseason practice. All other fall sports will continue to work locally with team physicians and athletic trainers to adjust practices to the appropriate level of activity, as necessary, based on current medical protocols.

Each new phase of activity provides new intelligence and experience and allows us to evaluate the implementation of our Conference and institutional medical protocols in real-time. In order to make the right health and safety decisions for our student-athletes, we believe it is best to continue in the appropriate phase of activity referenced above while we digest and share information from each campus to ensure we are moving forward cautiously.

We understand there are many questions regarding how this impacts schedules, as well as the feasibility of proceeding forward with the season at all. As we have consistently stated, we will continue to evaluate daily, while relying on our medical experts, to make the best decisions possible for the health, safety and wellness of our student-athletes.

14 Responses

  1. This is such a farce that it’s sad. The risk to kids in this age group is so much less that for people over 45 that it’s ridiculous. Plus we’ve recently found out that the COVID numbers are fake. Both the number of cases and deaths have been wildly exaggerated. People who die from cancer, heart attacks and even suicide have been listed as COVID deaths, and were told to do so by both HHS and the hospitals. Both Florida and Texas have now downsized their death numbers by hundreds and other states are expected to do the same. The risk to these kids is no worse than any flu virus, many have only a sore throat and headache, and many more are asymptomatic.

  2. They have just been taking us step by step toward the inevitable announcement that there will be no CFB this fall – at least B1G football. Just go ahead and get it over with so I can begin singing “Gloom, despair, and agony on me – deep, dark depression, excessive misery – if it weren’t for bad luck, I’d have no luck at all – gloom, despair, and agony on me.”

    On the bright side, I won’t have to hate people who schedule weddings on fall Saturdays this year. In a normal year those people are more evil than the Taliban.

    1. If there is one person to blame for this, I have someone in mind – but I dont blame her.

      Last week we had the B1G announce a schedule with a tremendous amount of flexibility in it to try to have a season. 5 days later, the schools say, “Nope. Not playing.”

      I think that Indiana O lineman, Feeney, – his mother’s post on Facebook – was the nail in the coffin. Positive cases would have caused some scheduling conflicts, but one very sick player would have been a PR and liability nightmare. Her post never allowed us to see if they could have pulled it off. With that out there, there was no way they could afford to have another case like that.

      And the truth is, as fit and minimally at risk very fit football athletes are, the big fellas on the line are overweight- carrying 50-80 artificial pounds – may be pre-diabetic, and some black players have sickle cell trait, and there are numerous other conditions that would make an athlete at risk of suffering serious illness from COVID-19. Someone was going to get very sick at some point.

      Feeney’s situation showed what can, and probably would, happen. And at the end of the day, no B1G administrator wanted any part of it.

  3. Yes COVID-19 has a higher death rate than the flu but so does cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and motor vehicle accidents. We aren’t going to stop driving cars anytime soon. Too many people still drink and drive. It is wise for all involved to get informed AND apply wisdom. CDC and WHO both report that although COVID-19 infection rates are going up BUT hospitalization rates are going down and death rates are not increasing. COVID-19 has a known risk and is not going away but life doesn’t have to stop because of it. Adjust and move on. Stop politicizing this disease. Stop blaming and start fixing. With all of the brain power in the BIG Ten one would figure that we would lead the way in finding a workable solution to playing sports instead of giving into fear and doubt. Disappointed in BIG leadership. Let the unprepared teams opt out of season. OSU is prepared and should play somewhere. Covid-19 isn’t Burger King – we can’t have it our way. If wearing a mask and social distancing is the price to pay to have life get back to as normal as possible, then it is a small price to pay.

  4. Just cancel the season I have no interest in watching empty stadiums and Osu and mich in oct, everyone is so afraid of law suits it’s a joke!

  5. We are at a point where people and specifically “academics” seem to be striving for “ZERO” risk. It simply does not exist but the over management of this situation appears to be in full force. I can not see the benefit of telling all universities to stand down from letting their teams move on with full equipment. Players must get ready for season. If Rutgers or someone else has some issue does this mean OSU or Michigan or Wisconsin or others can not move on. If this is the position of the BIG then we might as well cancel the season now because sometime during this season someone is going to have someone test positive. Let’s move on and let teams prepare without all the interference by administrators trying to eliminate all risk.

  6. or follow the actual scientific facts that the flu is much more dangerous for not only college players but the majority of the population and play football and stop the fear-mongering nonsense….cases do not equal hospitalizations and deaths..if anyone can contradict the facts please do so…doesn’t mean don’t be wise and cautious when need be, but the facts are we don’t do this during flu season when that is more harmful for the players and most people PERIOD. this is so ridiculous but there will be a bunch of sheep out there in their pompous political correctness that don’t like to hear actual facts and reasoning…

    1. Here is a fact for you, there were 34,200 deaths during the 2018–2019 influenza season. This virus is much more deadly than the flu, so please stop talking like you actually know facts. We’ve gone to extreme measures to try to mitigate the rona and still 160,000 people have lost their lives. Your mindless rhetoric based on what you’ve heard rather than researched facts is dangerous and a big reason we are in the mess we are in.

      That all said, you have an overall point that I do agree with. Fear of the unknown should not paralyze the world from moving forward. As always in life, people should weigh the risks and act appropriately.

      1. Way to cherry pick and manipulate the data to prove your point. 2018-2019 was a rather mild flu and there is a vaccine for the flu, that although not 100% effective, does lower the numbers of deaths we see. Covid-19 is a new variant to which a large portion of the population has yet to be exposed. The other thing that you forget to mention in that in the age group of those playing there is a very low percentage that will develop severe symptoms and much lower percentage that will die. To date there are 225 deaths due to Covid-19 in the 15-24 age group in the US. There are 5 million cases in the US so if someone in that age group gets it there is a 0.0045% percent chance of death from Co-vid 19 in the 15-24 age group. The other that is not mentioned it that a very very large portion of those the die from Covid-19 have co-morbidities, whether know or unknown, or have comprised immune systems.

        We need to stop with the fear and explain to the players and their families the odds and let them make the decision if they want to play. If a school can field enough players to play the game and a conference can field enough teams let them play.

      2. Here are some more facts for u. Deaths by pneumonia and the flu have virtually disappeared this year as all deaths are recorded now caused by COVID. Did a person die from it or with it? Are hospitals fudging the facts as they are paid for treating COVID cases and deaths? 50,000 people die yearly from Pnemonia. How many others deaths are being falsrey repoted? While we’re talking facts let’s also mention the increase of suicide, and people who are suffering or even died due to lack of routine medicinal care.

        1. Kurt, again we are fighting the whole “make it stick” phenomenon. If it’s said enough people will start to believe it. All deaths are not being recorded as caused by Covid right now. People who had the virus and it directly or indirectly caused their death are counted in the total death count. So like with HIV/AIDS, people normally die of other causes directly related to HIV/AIDS. The virus destroys their immune system so something as simple as the common cold could kill them. This virus does similar things, one example would be the blood clots it cause in rare cases. The blood clot is the reason for death, but they will be counted as a Covid death. So while we are still in the early states of a pandemic it is reasonable to error on the side of caution when declaring reasons for death, so most likely any case that could have been caused by Covid will be counted right now. Once some time passes and we are able to know without a doubt one way or another the numbers will become more accurate. The only questionable scenario would be if someone had symptoms of a heart attack, but didn’t go to the hospital due to fear of getting Covid (maybe they are obese and have high blood pressure) and end up passing away of a heart attack… Or even your suicide example… Does that get counted as a Covid death? Because the reason they died was due to Covid but not because of… But that’s for someone else to decide.

  7. Big Ten Presidents making this harder than it needs to be. They have the money. Make a bubble for every team and staff by using on campus hotels. Use the mask and testing protocols. Let universities opt out if needed but don’t cancel the season because one team can’t pull it off. OR let the Buckeyes play in SEC or Big 12 for a season.

Comments are closed.