The Pac-12 CEO Group voted unanimously to postpone its upcoming fall football season, the collegiate athletic conference announced Tuesday.
The move came less than two hours after the Big Ten announced that it would also postpone its season, becoming the first major athletic conference in the U.S. to take such a step because of the coronavirus pandemic.
The Pac-12 was expected to follow suit given that local coronavirus restrictions made meeting for practice difficult for some teams. Last week, dozens of players from the Pac-12 penned an open letter calling for better health policies and rights for athletes in order for a season to proceed.
"The health, safety and well-being of our student-athletes and all those connected to Pac-12 sports has been our number one priority since the start of this current crisis," Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott said in a statement. "Our student-athletes, fans, staff and all those who love college sports would like to have seen the season played this calendar year as originally planned, and we know how disappointing this is."
In its announcement, the Pac-12 said competition won't resume until next year, meaning its basketball teams and other winter sports programs won't play until 2021.
The Pac-12's decision makes it the fourth Football Bowl Subdivision conference to cancel college football this fall. Other major conferences, including the Southeastern Conference and Atlantic Coast Conference, have not given indications about whether they will delay their seasons.
“We have never had a FB season in a COVID-19 environment. Can we play? I don’t know," SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey said in a tweet Monday. "We haven’t stopped trying. We support, educate and care for student-athletes every day, and will continue to do so...every day."
Meanwhile, President TrumpDonald TrumpKinzinger says Trump 'winning' because so many Republicans 'have remained silent' Our remote warfare counterterrorism strategy is more risk than reward Far-right rally draws small crowd, large police presence at Capitol MORE and others have called for the season to go on as planned.
"The student-athletes have been working too hard for their season to be cancelled," Trump tweeted, sharing the #WeWantToPlay hashtag used by players as part of the campaign to move the seasons forward.