At least one Division III school in Maine is calling off the fall sports season due to the COVID-19 pandemic, as universities across the country grapple with how and if students - and student-athletes should return to campus.
Bowdoin College announced on Monday that it would not be participating in the fall NESCAC season.
"This is one of the very disappointing outcomes of our plan," Bowdoin President Clayton Rose said in a statement. "Athletics is a central part of the Bowdoin experience for many of our students and for the College more generally. NESCAC has not yet determined what will happen with conference play or how coaches in this extraordinary semester may interact with athletes on fall, winter, and spring teams during the fall semester, but I am hopeful that there will be significant opportunities this fall for coaches to work with those athletes who are both on and off campus.
"Varsity athletes living on campus are likely to have in-person workout opportunities with coaches, but unfortunately, students living off campus will not be permitted to participate in on-campus workouts."
Rose left the possibility open of returning to play in winter and spring sports.
Across the college sports world, a number of Division I student-athletes have tested positive for COVID-19 across the SEC, Big Ten and Big 12 schools. Earlier this month, the University of Maryland announced a return-to-facility plan for student-athletes which included wellness checks and a requirement to wear face masks.
Other schools around the DMV - ranging from smaller Division III schools to the large Division I programs - are still working on their plans with everything constantly changing. But no one in this area has canceled their season.
At Salisbury University in Maryland, athletic department spokesperson Cyrill Parham told NBC Sports Washington that the campus will be open in the fall with a hybrid of online and in-person classes."The athletic department is currently working through several different scenarios in order to help ensure the safety of our student-athletes, coaches, staff and fans," he wrote. "We haven't made an official announcement regarding the status of athletics in the fall but we are trying to follow guidance from the CDC and the state of Maryland in order to make plans in the fall."
And at St. Mary's College of Maryland, athletic department spokesperson Gus Mohlhenrich said they were still aiming to have a fall season.
"The goal is to play the schedules our coaches set before COVID-19 hit, but we may have to cancel non-conference games and contests that require extended travel time," he said. "Right now we are establishing safety protocols for practice, travel, and games."
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