Steve Gardner, USA TODAY
Published 2:37 p.m. ET Aug. 16, 2020
USA Today Sports’ Dan Wolken and Paul Myerberg explain the financial debt college football will incur from a fall without football.
One of the Big Ten’s most prominent football players is calling on the conference to reverse its decision to postpone the season.
Ohio State quarterback Justin Fields, a potential Heisman Trophy candidate this season, has created a petition to immediately reinstate the fall football season — which OSU athletic director Gene Smith just announced last week would be scrapped due to the coronavirus outbreak.
In the petition, Fields says he speaks for “football players of the Big Ten, together with the fans and supporters of college football” in asking for players and teams to be able to make their own choices about playing or opting out.
“We want to play,” the petition reads. “We believe that safety protocols have been established and can be maintained to mitigate concerns of exposure to Covid 19.” It concludes with the hashtag: #LetUsPlay!
Fields tweeted Sunday that the issue is “close to my heart” as he urged people to sign. As of 2 p.m. ET, it had already reached its original goal of 75,000 signatures.
This cause is close to my heart – please sign: https://t.co/yFKlYE7pP0
— Justin Fields (@justnfields) August 16, 2020
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At the same time, the parents of several Iowa football players are continuing a fight for fall football. And Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence has received support from President Donald Trump in his efforts to salvage the season.
The Big Ten and Pac-12 have are the only two of the Power Five conferences to announce they will not be playing football this fall. Meanwhile, the ACC, SEC and Big 12 are still moving forward with plans to begin their seasons next month.