Kirk Herbstreit reacts to Nebraska’s hopes to still play this fall after the Big Ten announced it will postpone the 2020 season. (1:24)
Nebraska football coach Scott Frost, president Ted Carter and chancellor Ronnie Green released a joint statement Tuesday afternoon saying they hope to still possibly compete this fall.
“We will continue to consult with medical experts and evaluate the situation as it emerges,” the statement read. “We hope it may be possible for our student athletes to have the opportunity to compete.”
The statement comes after Big Ten conference presidents and chancellors voted Tuesday to postpone all fall sports seasons, including football, with hopes of playing in the spring.
“We are very disappointed in the decision by the Big Ten Conference to postpone the fall football season, as we have been and continue to be ready to play,” the statement read.
It concluded with, “Safety comes first. Based on the conversations with our medical experts, we continue to strongly believe the absolute safest place for our student athletes is within the rigorous safety protocols, testing procedures, and the structure and support provided by Husker Athletics.”
Frost said Monday that Nebraska would be prepared to play this upcoming season, even if the Cornhuskers had to do so outside of the Big Ten.
“We’re a proud member of the Big Ten,” Frost said during a Zoom teleconference. “We want to play a Big Ten schedule. I think the only reason we would look at any other options is if for some reason the Big Ten wasn’t playing and only a handful of teams from the Big Ten wanted to continue playing. I think if that’s the case, I think we’re prepared to look at any and all options.”
Asked Tuesday about Nebraska’s statement, commissioner Kevin Warren told ESPN’s Heather Dinich, “We have 14 schools in the Big Ten conference. I appreciate the passion of all of our schools. I didn’t expect all of our coaches to be ecstatic that the decision was made, so I understand they’re passionate. … My expectation is that when you’re in a conference, you can’t be in a conference and be an independent. That’s where we are. I expect for our 14 members to go forward together.”
Ohio State athletic director Gene Smith confirmed to ESPN’s Adam Rittenberg on Tuesday that the school would not be pursuing opportunities in other conferences for a fall season. Coach Ryan Day had indicated they were open to the possibility Monday.
Frost said Monday that he isn’t in favor of playing in the spring because of the toll it would take on his players to play two seasons in a calendar year.
“People need to understand the carnage and aftermath of what college athletics looks like if we don’t play,” Frost said.