We as a society value a piece of information more if it’s said to us from a face we know from the TV. See the 2016 Presidential election if you don’t believe me. Or, for a more recent example, see Kirk Herbstreit‘s comments that, based nothing more on his understanding of the experts, it would be 12 to 18 months until we get a vaccine and, thus, 12 to 18 months until we get college football again.
Hornet’s nest: Kicked.
Rece Davis followed that episode with some measured optimism, and now Herbstreit’s other partner, Chris Fowler, has offered his own measured reporting, if you want to even call it that.
In an Instagram video posted on Sunday, ESPN’s lead college football play-by-play man talked through the drawbacks of positioning the 2020 college football season to be played as scheduled, to be played in November, or to be pushed back all the way to February. That third scenario, Fowler says, is “gaining momentum” among “a lot of reasonable people” and might emerge as the “most prudent course of action.”
The season would begin “at some point in February” and conclude in May and/or June.
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We are 20 Saturdays from the SCHEDULED start of CFB.. so how likely is that looking? What scenarios are being weighed? When will we know more? Who’s gonna decide all this? You sure are asking a lot of questions! And I get it. I’m starving for answers too. So here’s some “informed speculation” on where we are now after checking in with folks this week. I can only be so specific and people don’t want their names attached to this topic right now. But… here goes. Please comment with your take if you like. #cfb #collegefootball #football #sports @espn @espncfb
Obviously, the college football season was designed to be played parallel with the levels of football both above and below, and pushing the college game to the spring while (presumably) the professional and high school seasons remained in the fall would present all sorts of logistical hurdles to jump through.
There’s also the risk that the virus recedes in August, September, October and November only to come back stronger and meaner in December, January and February. But pushing the season back would be a calculated risk that the testing and treatment of the coronavirus will advance enough that by that point college presidents would feel comfortable opening their stadiums to fans, students and players.