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ESPN's Lee Corso: 'I would not play football until February 2021'

Nick Bromberg
·3 min read
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ESPN college football analyst Lee Corso supports the Big Ten and Pac-12’s decisions to postpone their fall sports seasons.

The longtime “College GameDay” analyst said on the 2020 season debut of the show that he believed there shouldn’t be any college football until February 2021 to err on the side of safety during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I agree with the Big Ten and the Pac-12 about not playing college football this season because of the ‘what ifs?’ Basically, there are a number of people — thousands of people involved in college football,” Corso said. “I would not play football until February 2021. I tell you what, the National Football League season will be over and [there will be] emphasis on college football.”

A full slate of college football was originally scheduled for Labor Day weekend. But after two games on Thursday there are just six games on Saturday and one on Monday as four FBS conferences have postponed their seasons and conferences like the SEC, ACC and Big 12 delayed their start dates to later in the month. Just 76 of 130 FBS teams are set to play in 2020.

Corso’s comments won’t be viewed favorably by the loud contingent advocating for every school at the top level of college football to play this fall even though he’s come to a fair conclusion. It’s no guarantee that the season will be able to be completed as scheduled. We sure hope it does, but it’s far from a sure thing.

But what Corso said on Saturday morning won’t be met with nearly as much vitriol as his co-worker Kirk Herbstreit’s comments were earlier this year. As the pandemic spread across the United States in March, Herbstreit said he would be “shocked” if there was college football in the fall without a vaccine.

A lot of people thought Herbstreit was being alarmist at the time. As it turns out, he really wasn’t. While we’re able to watch football games this weekend and hopefully in the weekends ahead, it’s still important to remember that we’re in the throes of a global pandemic. And that life as we knew it during the 2019 regular season is an incredibly long way away.

ESPN broadcaster Lee Corso watches LSU tale on Alabama in the first half of an NCAA football game Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019, in Tuscaloosa, Ala. (AP Photo/Vasha Hunt)
Lee Corso, 85, is a college football staple. And he would like the season to wait until 2021. (AP Photo/Vasha Hunt)

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Nick Bromberg is a writer for Yahoo Sports.

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