MIAA votes to postpone conference play for 2020 fall sports

k college.png
All across the country, colleges and universities are trying to welcome prospective students without them ever setting foot on campus. (WWMT/File){ }

The Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association announced a vote to postpone conference competition and conference tournaments for cross country, football, men’s and women’s golf, men’s and women’s soccer, and volleyball.

The conference would develop schedules for the sports to take place later in the academic year. The association said it "is committed to offering engaging athletic experiences for student-athletes in these sports with extensive team activities this fall to include practice, skill development, strength and conditioning, leadership, and professional development opportunities."

“The member presidents of the MIAA share a strong commitment to cooperation and competition while expressing a range of perspectives reflective of each institution’s mission and judgment about its capacities. Each day brings new challenges that none of us has faced before and our membership remains committed to continuing our work together with honesty and graciousness as we solve the many problems related to the COVID-19 pandemic. The MIAA has a storied history and a strong commitment to conference competition and we look forward to the future when we can do so together,” Calvin University President Michael Le Roy, who is the current chair of the MIAA, said.

Not all MIAA schools are pulling the plug on fall sports. Adrian College, Calvin University, and Trine University are exploring options to compete in all fall sports that they normally sponsor. Olivet College would explore options for competing in cross country, golf, and tennis this fall.

That will not be the case however at Kalamazoo College.

"Throughout this pandemic, our highest institutional priority has been the health and well-being of our community. At this time, the risk to the health of our student-athletes, our larger campus and Kalamazoo communities, and our potential competitors and their communities is too great to move forward with intercollegiate competition," Kalamazoo College President Jorge G. Gonzalez said.

Kalamazoo College said their decision "was based on the latest COVID-19 data in Michigan, consultation with team doctors and local public health officials, and observation of ongoing challenges experienced by professional leagues and other collegiate conferences attempting to restart or begin seasons."

Although competition has been postponed, Kalamazoo College coaching and athletic training staff would be developing workout programs and other team activities that can be conducted safely. A decision on resuming winter and spring 2021 intercollegiate athletic competition would be made later in the fall.

Decisions regarding winter sports that begin play in the fall — men’s and women’s basketball, wrestling, swimming and diving, and indoor track and field — would be made at a later date.