by Calvin Larson, Assistant Athletic Director – Media Relations
The Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Council of Presidents voted Friday to play a conference-only schedule during the Fall 2020 sports season and will evaluate the feasibility of league competition on a sport-by-sport basis.
Playing a conference-only schedule affords GLIAC members additional time to get student-athletes back on campuses and through COVID-19 monitoring protocols, as well as the necessary time to conduct pre-season training in football, volleyball, soccer, cross country and women’s tennis. Collegiate athletics has been on hold since mid-March.
“We recognize that student-athletes are anxious to return to campus and their teams,” GLIAC Commissioner Kris Dunbar said. “Throughout the summer, school administrators have put guidelines in place to ensure that student-athletes are properly tested, monitored daily and training safely. I admire the work they have done to put the health and safety of the student-athletes, coaches and support personnel above all. At the same time, we’re working toward returning to competition safely.”
During the past month, GLIAC athletic directors, athletic trainers and the league’s COVID-19 task force have developed safe competition protocols and updated scheduling modules for fall and winter sports. The task force is relying on NCAA and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommendations as the league endeavors to return safely to competition. The GLIAC is striving toward consistency in COVID-19 testing, safe training, travel, hosting and in-game protocols among its 12 members.
GLIAC presidents plan to reconvene in early August to re-evaluate each school’s ability to meet the recommendations put forth by the task force.