In an interview with 960 The Ref radio station in Athens, Ga., Georgia Athletic Director Greg McGarity stated that there will be no sports practices taking place during the next several weeks, with spring football included.
The Georgia spring football practices were set to start on Tuesday. On Thursday, the University System of Georgia announced that all classes were postponed for the next two weeks and that students who were on spring break have been advised not to return to campus. The USG announced that students are encouraged not to return to campus until at least March 29, most likely meaning those first two weeks of scheduled practices are definitely off the table.
The NCAA also announced the cancellation of all winter and spring championship events, such as the NCAA men’s basketball tournament and the College World Series. McGarity revealed that the conference athletic directors have a conference call on Friday to discuss what comes next.
This all stems from the outbreak of the coronavirus (COVID-19).
“We’re following the guidance from the chancellors which said students are strongly encouraged to be off-campus,” McGarity said. “For us to be able to practice with that directive doesn’t make sense.
“So for this period of time, there will be no practices. We’ll just see where things stand after that two week period.”
UGA Athletics Director Greg McGarity tells us that no sports practices will be taking place during the next several weeks at least, which includes Football Spring Practice that was set to begin next Tuesday. pic.twitter.com/nerN7jVN8K
— 960 The Ref (@960theref) March 13, 2020
The SEC had announced that all sporting events through March 30 had been canceled but the decision for spring football practices and activities would be left up to each individual school. SEC commissioner Greg Sankey also announced that all in-person recruiting on and off-campus would stop as well.
“We did have conversations about recruiting I referenced and have stopped off-campus and on-campus recruiting for a period of time,” Sankey said. “That could be extended. I’ve identified the NCAA needs to fully engage on this issue as well.”
As far as G-Day, Georgia’s annual spring scrimmage which is set for April 18, McGarity previously stated that it was too early to know for sure whether that event would happen.
“I would ask the fans to be patient, more information will be forthcoming at the end of March,” McGarity said on Wednesday night. “We still have some time left. I would just say stay tuned, and we’ll see what the landscape looks like.”
Obviously much has changed in the 36 hours since McGarity gave that statement, as the NBA, MLB, PGA Tour and numerous other sports leagues have suspended operations due to the coronavirus.
Some schools such as Notre Dame have already suspended spring practice. Schools like Michigan and Ohio State have already canceled their spring games, which were both set for April.
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