“If there’s no season, we will be f*****.”

You can read the long version of what Brett McMurphy got out of a survey of athletic directors about the fate of the 2020 football season…

Or you can read the tl;dr version.

They may wait a long time to start.  They may not play until there’s a vaccine available for the players.  They may only offer us a truncated version of a season.  But offer up one, they will.  Because, in the end, money matters more than anything else in college athletics.

30 Comments

Filed under College Football, It's Just Bidness

30 responses to ““If there’s no season, we will be f*****.”

  1. Atticus

    It ain’t happening. No vaccine means no large gatherings and players won’t want to be in locker rooms either.

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    • Maybe you’re right, but if they find a successful vaccine by year’s end, spring football will take on an entirely new meaning.

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      • Senator, I just don’t see spring football. Those who are high selection draft-eligible will not play. For those that do play, they will drop as soon as their team is out of the playoff fight. Maybe a small number of bowl games end up on the schedule. As soon as a team is no longer bowl eligible, another group of players will sit.

        That doesn’t even get into the TV contract mess. The big networks including the WWL already have contracts in place for programming from January to May especially on the weekends. Is the NCAA going to allow college football to compete every weekend with its crown jewel, March Madness? Is CBS going to tell Augusta National to plan to move The Masters on Saturday to Golf Channel so they can broadcast the 3:30 SEC game? Are we going to play college football on Thursday nights (can you imagine the headache of getting from Atlanta to Athens and back)?

        I get the money angle. The ADs need the money. They’ll play in the fall with no fans and students in the stands before they move to the spring. I hope if they do that we all tell them to take a hike for the season.

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        • I would suggest we are in uncharted territory. A few weeks ago, there were scheduling suggestions that put every major sporting event on the air in October.

          Nobody has any idea when the all clear is coming, but I am confident when it does come, college football will be scrambling to get out of the gate ASAP.

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          • I agree about being in uncharted territory (my 401k tells me that) … I just don’t see a spring football season happening without some major give-and-take among the NCAA, the conferences (even within the conferences, the trade-off between football and men’s basketball), and the networks.

            I would suggest the powers-that-be would have the following preferences:
            1) No change to the schedule with additional conditioning/no contact days added to the front of the fall camp schedule – likelihood drops as the days go by
            2) Delayed start of the season to September 26 with a restructured 10-game schedule (1 bye week) to end the regular season on December 5 with championship weekend moved back to December 12 – I personally think this is the scenario most likely (no, I’m not getting into a public health debate).
            3) A season with no fans and no students in the stands (and I bet the ADs find a way to allow their Magill Society type of members to attend in a physically distanced environment – think suites and club level seating) with a to-be-determined start date – this is the 2nd most likely scenario at this time
            4) Spring football scenario – I don’t see how this will work in the real world. The moving parts and the competing priorities just don’t seem to work in my mind to make it remotely possible.
            5) A much later fall start date with the season ending in early February – I see the players saying no way to this scenario where they would get no time at home for winter break because they would be playing through the holidays.
            6) No college football in 2020 – I don’t see the universities having the stomach or, in many cases, the bank accounts for this.

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            • Of course, all of this assumes that campuses will be open for students this fall. That’s the scenario that has to scare the living hell out of every administrator on a major college campus and even more so, every off-campus property manager with mortgages to pay.

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  2. Alan

    I’ve never heard Dr. Fauci or Dr. Birx ever say anything other than 12 to 18 months for a vaccine. But it sounds like we’ll have approved treatments a lot sooner.

    I think the question we should be asking is if ADs are desperate enough for money to play the 2020 season in empty stadiums.

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  3. DawgByte

    I can see it now… we’ll have a truncated season and Georgia will win the National Championship. It will have an asterisk * in the history books. That’s just how we roll.

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  4. chopdawg

    Right now I’m trying to figure how many season tickets I want to order. The Bulldog Club donations were due Feb 15, right before the virus went viral (see what I did there?), and now the money for the actual tickets is due April 6.

    I asked the UGA ticket office this question by e-mail (the only way they will respond to questions right now):

    “What is the refund policy for ticket price and contribution cost for any home game cancelled during the 2020 season?” I got this answer:

    “Let’s hope this does not happen, but if the season were to be canceled, the Ticket Office would refund your ticket purchase.”

    I appreciate the people in the ticket office at least being available to answer questions, but that’s not really an answer. Guess what they’re telling me is, I’ll only get a refund if the entire season is cancelled; no refunds if only certain games are cancelled, no refunds if games are postponed.

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    • KornDawg

      I’d like to think they would refund the ticket cost of any individual games that were canceled, or possibly apply that money to next year’s Hartman Fund donation. But them screwing us entirely wouldn’t surprise me, either.

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      • There is a specific selection you make on your application about whether you want to have any refunds applied to future Hartman Fund points. I think it will be exactly what they did for baseball tickets. All games not played will be refunded (or at least I hope that’s what they do for football).

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        • chopdawg

          Not certain, but I think that refers to refunds on game tickets you order but don’t have enough points to receive, like high-demand away-game tickets.

          What concerns me is the possibility that September games are cancelled with no refunds.

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          • The AA refunded canceled tickets for baseball games. I have no reason to believe they won’t do it for football unless McGarity wants to catch total hell this fall.

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      • chopdawg

        That’s what I was hoping for, a commitment to refunds for individual games, at least the single-game ticket price.

        I think the responses to college athletic departments to the Covid crisis are very, very important for the future of the game as we know it. If fans have to go without games–and get stiffed by their universities on ticket prices along the way–they’re going to realize a lot sooner than they would have anyway that, in future years, they can do without spending huge sums of money months in advance on college football tickets.

        When that happens, I guess we’ll be doing pretty much what we’re doing now, which is watching video gamers play sports that once were played by real athletes.

        Liked by 1 person

    • ATL Dawg

      The current Butts-Mehre Country Club priorities are as follows:

      Getting the season ticket money in their possession with minimal delay so that a) people don’t have longer to think things over and possibly back out and b) they can start earning interest on the millions.
      Avoid discussing the personal seat license fees (aka “donations”).
      Start formulating a plan to refund the season ticket money as late as possible so as to maximize the interest earned.
      Start formulating a plan to either a) try and get away with not refunding the personal seat license fees or b) reluctantly apply them to the 2021 season.

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      • ATL Dawg

        Well, those were supposed to be numbered and spaced better to make them easier to read but the wordpress editor removed some of my formatting. Sorry about that.

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      • chopdawg

        I control 8 renewable season tix that last year were spread among several family members. This year, the economic situation, especially job uncertainties and big hits to IRAs, has got us all wondering if we can really afford to lay out another $410 for each season ticket so far in advance, knowing we’ve already spent the seat-license fees (and there won’t be any refunds on those because they’re “donations”), and when we’re not sure about getting refunds for single games that might be cancelled.

        Glad to hear about the baseball refunds, but I wish I’d been told by the ticket office that single-game refunds would definitely be issued. We’re talking about a whole lot more money for football game refunds than for baseball.

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        • ATL Dawg

          I’m as skeptical as anyone about them but I’m pretty sure they’ll refund the price of the ticket for any game that’s cancelled. Now, the refunds may not go out until October because they want to hold on to that money to maximize the interest it earns…but I think they’ll eventually do it. Even I would be shocked if they didn’t. The fact that they couldn’t even give you a straight answer is typical.

          As for the seat license fees, if the whole season is cancelled, I think they’ll do the bare minimum and let the 2020 fees satisfy 2021 requirements. But they will not want to issue any straight refunds and will fight tooth and nail on that.

          If only some of the season is cancelled, I think their first attempt at a stance regarding the fees will be to not even mention them and do absolutely nothing. Whether they would get away with that or whether they would be forced to do some sort of bare minimum proration credit for 2021 would depend on fan/public reaction.

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          • Tony Barnhart

            If they apply 2020 seat donations to 2021, isn’t that effectively a refund just delayed a year from the standpoint of their financial impact.

            What i could see, is an option to either apply last years donation or make a new one like normal for double (triple?) the Hartman point credit. Same with ticket refunds perhaps. They could really get creative with points, which would piss some people off but save them some real skin.

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            • ATL Dawg

              Yeah, it’s effectively a delayed refund. But it’s the minimum they’ll be able to get away with and it’s still better (for them) than an on time refund.

              I guess I could see them maybe offering some sort of bonus like you mention in 2021 to try and entice people to “donate” even more. We’ve already seen them take a similar inflationary approach to their precious points scheme with their Magill Society tactic.

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          • chopdawg

            Got another email from them today, they definitely will refund ticket price of any cancelled game

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  5. TDC DAWG

    Just so you don’t get too excited a vaccine would most likely not be available until the early part of 2021,

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  6. Texas Dawg

    If we are still dealing with this to the point the season is cancelled, then football will be the least of our worries.

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  7. ATL Dawg

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