Bumps along the way

For the record, pandemic or no pandemic, I’m close to 100% sure the 2020 college football season will start on time.  What I’m far less certain about is the likelihood that the season will be played without interruption.

I find it hard to disagree with David Wunderlich, when he writes,

If the college football season does start on time, it’s hard to imagine that it will go off without a hitch. There will be programs with positive tests. Schools will have to make hard decisions on whether to allow an opponent to come to campus if that opponent is in a hotspot. Other schools will have to make hard decisions on whether to go to a campus in a hotspot. It could get exceptionally ugly if it’s a conference game in question, as past issues with hurricane-related reschedulings are any indication.

The 2020 season, if it happens despite Dr. Fauci’s recommendation, is going to be unlike anything we’ve ever seen.

Honestly, even though we’ve heard plenty about how schools and conferences are making contingency plans, I don’t see how it’s possible for them to game everything out before it happens.  What are your thoughts about that?

56 Comments

Filed under College Football, The Body Is A Temple

56 responses to “Bumps along the way

  1. Hogbody Spradlin

    I think you’re right. My personal, extremely un-scientific opinion is that the current second phase of COVID will taper off by mid July, and people (you know: “they”, “everybody I know”, etc) will figure out that life must resume. On the other hand (my personal, extremely un-scientific hedging) one or two big clusters of new cases in August could cause another shut down stampede.
    We were doing pretty good in Georgetown County . . . until some of the kids had a do it yourself senior prom for 30-35 couples, and wound up with 30-40 cases. All doing well but it hit home.

    Like

    • Dylan Dreyer's Booty

      We aren’t in the second phase. We’re still in the first, at least in ‘murica. Cases in this country are not declining. They have leveled off some, but overall, as NY and NJ have declined, the Sunbelt (including GA) just keep getting bigger. The second phase – if we ever get there – would be expected in late October, November, December. Conference Championships and Bowl season is going to be really interesting.

      Fauci, et al., might not know everything, but they have essentially right about everything so far. Maybe they will be wrong in the future, but I wouldn’t bet money on it.

      Like

      • Beer Money

        Doomsday Fauci was not right about anything. Remember when he said millions would die? Then several hundreds of thousand? Then masks don’t work? Then they did work? Then the second wave is inevitable? Then it wasn’t? Now it might be? I guess if you cover all bases by throwing shit out there for political reasons, then yeah you do hit it right at some point. It’s like playing the lottery and playing all possible combinations.

        If they can straighten out the treatment option, then that will be the end of this crap.

        Liked by 3 people

        • Bob

          Thanks for your input Coach Gundy.

          Liked by 1 person

        • Fauci just came out this week and said the mask flip flop was based on the fact that the administration didn’t want to put any more pressure on the short supplies of PPE. They told the public we didn’t need masks because they knew we didn’t have enough for our health care workers. They were trying to save their asses by lying to the American public.

          Liked by 1 person

        • In just three sentences and a shit-ton of gibberish you made three definitively false statements. That’s a strong record willful denial.

          Like

  2. FisheriesDawg

    Going to make for an interesting playoff debate when we’ve got forfeits/double forfeits on a contender’s record. Or, a team has a close loss but their star QB/RB was held out after a positive test on Friday.

    I do think the teams will play unless there is a massive outbreak among the team. It’s possible that state quarantine orders prevent a game from being held…does that mean the host team forfeits? Will Gator fans whine if LSU beats them in an empty stadium and prevents them from claiming to be SEC East co-champs? Well, we already know the answer to that last one.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. The ADs will not have made plans for those contingencies and neither have the conference offices.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Who knows what happens? I don’t think even the experts know what is going to happen when large events start back up.

    I have a framework for how I’m going to decide my level of participation or lack thereof as a fan. That’s the only thing I can control.

    I probably would have done something a bit differently by delaying the season’s start to the end of September and shortening the regular season to 11 weeks (10 games plus a bye week). I also understand Mary Beth, Terry, Kathleen, Christina, Megan, et. al. need a new pair of shoes. That’s why they playin’.

    Like

    • PTC DAWG

      Your first sentence is spot on.

      Like

    • Macallanlover

      No one, Fauci included, can know at this point. D1 schools have to prepare assuming the best because they have no justifiable reason not to, at this date, and because it would be a catastrophe to not do your best on your highest income producing sport. That could change as quickly as next week, we simply don’t know enough on June 19.

      I would say that smaller schools net so little on football they could justify betting against putting forth the effort. Risk/reward is out of proportion. Short term payout for them going all-in is chump change, while the costs of big money to run tests, risk lawyer fees, and pay full overhead can reach well above any budget they have ever seen. Mitigating factor is any long-term impact they may face from sitting this dance out.

      If my bookie would take this bet now, I would bet a thousand on the season not being played on the start date, and would bet more, giving him odds, that we don’t see a full regular season in CFB. If we play, one of the more interesting things to watch for is teams forfeiting games that don’t impact their chance for playing for something bigger, and blaming it on concern for the athlete’s health. Why risk it for playing a Murray State if they have had an outbreak (however small)? Or more provocative, playing a GT the week before the SECCG with your spot secured. So much working against this going smoothly. I hope I am wrong but the cards are looking weak with what I see from reading and hearing.

      Like

  5. Atticus

    You always go back to how much the coaches and ADs make. How about the young lady earning 45,000 in the athletic department or the restaurant owners and hotel operators and their employees. How about the truck drivers that bring product into Athens for those weekends or the coffee shops or the hotel cleaning people? I understand sarcasm but It’s so much bigger than Just overpaid coaches protecting their pie.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Atticus

      Oops. Wrong post I flipped the pages.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Atticus, if you were trying to respond to me, I’ll respond. All of the coaches and ADs and their minions are overpaid because the money has to go somewhere because it isn’t going to the labor beyond the value of the scholarship, and most athletes on campus aren’t even on full rides for that (I find that to be a real travesty once again because of the labor price-fixing cartel called the NCAA and its membership).

      On the question of local economies, I’ve been vocal about the fact that no or limited numbers of fans in the stadium or a canceled season is going to hurt the person quietly working in the athletic office and the businesses in college towns all over the country. I hate it for them as one who doesn’t tailgate but goes to a local owned restaurant before every game.

      The bottom line is that I doubt the ADs and coaches are going to take voluntary pay cuts or turn down their bonuses, so the young woman making $45k can keep her job.

      Like

      • Atticus

        No I wasn’t responding to you I was responding to the senators remark in a different posting about college football season being played so their wives can have more shoes. It’s absolute horseshit. With all due respect you have no idea what you’re talking about. Are AD’s and head coaches and coaches in general overpaid some would say they are some would say it’s what the market bears. I don’t necessarily disagree with you the money is out of control. But the larger point being that if they are playing college football it’s only to pad the salaries of a decent head coaches is just bullshit. Shut down the college football season for one year and I promise you there will be many many jobs lost. Jobs far below the overpaid head coaches. Jobs far outside the realm of athletic departments

        Like

        • But the larger point being that if they are playing college football it’s only to pad the salaries of a decent head coaches is just bullshit.

          If you think that’s my larger point, sorry to disappoint you, but it ain’t.

          Like

          • Atticus

            I mentioned that I understood you were using sarcasm but you and I both know the decisions are being driven by money I get that. My point/question is this …who suffers most if college football doesnt play?

            Like

        • My comment is that the coaches’ market is distorted because the price-fixing cartel makes it where the money flows to the coaches and the administrators.

          If you’re a bit prickly about the use of snark that money is the driving factor for why they’re playing, you’re fooling yourself.

          Like

  6. Argondawg

    I have a 21 year old college student daughter who is pretty much taking zero precautions when she is out. I dont see her or her friends doing much of anything to slow the spread. they really don’t feel like this affects them much. She social distances from higher risk people but amongst her friends not much of anything. If our players mingle with the student population the positive tests are going to come in waves. I think every program and every school around the country is going to be in the same boat. the only way this works is some level of isolation but that is not being a student. I don’t think they will be in much more of a harmful situation than the average UGA student will be putting themselves in. Probably less so because of the level of testing they will be receiving. Being a resident of Athens I am not looking forward to the return of the students from a Corona standpoint. Gonna be a shit show I imagine.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Bright Idea

    If we only knew there would be an all clear signal at some point from both a medical and political standpoint I’d say let’s delay football, but I never see that consensus coming, ever. Even if a miracle vaccine is created today the haggling over it will last for months, if not years. Start the season and if it gets stopped, so be it. It can be thrown on the pile of everything else that has been destroyed.

    Liked by 1 person

    • doofusdawg

      Exactly. This virus may be with us for years. What if we cancel the season this year and next year the virus is still flourishing. What happens next year.

      At some point we have to get on with our lives. Either that or it’s just another process that continues and completely changes society. And who wants that.

      Like

    • I personally very much believe that if there was a vaccine it will be all hands on deck 247 to get it out

      Like

  8. stoopnagle

    I’ll leave my observations (for what it’s worth) here: UGA and CFB will start on time as the good Senator postulates. And I think it will be full-on attendance with masks required to enter the stadium – but with less compliance and little to no enforcement once one is through the gate. As many have pointed out, I agree the big leagues will not sacrifice an advantage to the others and SEC/B1G aren’t going to leave money on the table. And we all respect the externalities: impact on Athens businesses and jobs and the like.

    But we can look at Italy and soccer matches and presume cases will likely dramatically increase in October as a result of mass gatherings for athletic events along with schools opening, etc. I doubt there’s tolerance for a South Korean-type approach to K-12 schools here. My guess is we’ll be looking at a mess of cancellations and shut-downs – our initial response negated by our lack of understanding and commitment today.

    Going around Athens and Watkinsville the past few days, there’s less and less compliance with mask-wearing and social distancing (granted more of the latter seems to be happening) as folks weary of dealing with the idea of a pandemic. But like the meme says, “we may be done with the ‘rona, but that doesn’t mean ‘rona is done with us.” In Iceland, where there was universal free testing, about half of the positive cases were asymptomatic. I’ll assume that as a standard. Johns Hopkins reports another 900 cases in Georgia yesterday as the graph continues a steady upward trend it began in March. And we’re not doing universal, free testing; so I’ll also assume the numbers are artificially low. Gladly, the trend of confirmed cases hasn’t accelerated as we’ve re-opened public-facing businesses, so perhaps there are some mitigating factors at play. I’ll be the first to admit I don’t know.

    I know UGA is, in my view, doing a good job trying to protect students, faculty, and staff while still going about the business of a public flagship research university. It’s not perfect, but we’re making sure work and learning spaces are well-cleaned and everyone has some protection on hand. I don’t go back in until phase III, but I trust our leadership and my peers to be responsible to each other. I’m concerned when everyone descends on Athens for fall and then for the first game, but again these are just my thoughts and observations. I’ll hold on to my tickets precisely for the reasons in one of the articles a few days ago: I am not losing my spot; but I doubt I’ll go to any games this year (at least right now — when it gets here, I might feel differently). And that’s probably more than anyone cares to read about how I feel.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Atticus

      I laugh my ass off because the masks that people are wearing do not work it’s a freaking clown show out there. OK, nice so I don’t spit on somebody because I have a mascon but if I’m socially distanced and the virus is out there my piece of cloth or some cheap ass paper thin blue mask is not going to prevent the virus from spreading.

      Like

  9. jpt31501

    Nobody seems to have considered what happens to our chances if our #1 and #2 quarterbacks test positive just before Bama, Jacksonville or any other game for that matter

    Like

    • Paul

      Jpt31501 I think this is the type question no one has answered yet. We currently have about a dozen D1 schools with athletes testing positive. This will undoubtedly continue to happen during the season. Since players are constantly in close contact with other team members, who gets quarantined or isolated? Will there be standardized guidelines about this sort of thing everyone will agree to? If your top two QB’s are out do you play anyway or just forfeit? Under what conditions can a game be rescheduled? What happens if one team is willing to play despite having players who test positive but their opponent is not? What happens when a team knowingly puts an asymptomatic but COVID-19 positive player on the field? All these things are certain to happen. The NCAA and the conferences literally cannot afford to make this up as they go along. At some point they have to start talking publicly about these things.

      Like

    • Atticus

      You let them play or if they choose to not and that’s fine as well. Most people in that age group are asymptomatic and very rare they get really sick.

      Like

    • Bright Idea

      If games are played, I surely hope that teams potentially being handicapped by positive tests and can’t possibly win the big game don’t factor into any decision making. Create a policy and follow it even if it means you play a 3rd string DB at quarterback. Everybody knows this season will be a fluke. We’re bound to see poor execution and several walk-ons on the field. Is that a reason to just forfeit or not play? Only a few teams have a legit shot at the NC anyway without a pandemic.

      Like

    • ugafidelis

      Stetson Bennett comes in a leads us to a gotdam victory that’s what.

      Like

    • I’ve mentioned there being an asterisk or canx of this very thing many times. I specifically said what if the quarterback Room at some school gets it. If a team position group orStarters get it they can’t play

      Like

  10. W Cobb Dawg

    Just read that Texas has had 27 positive tests so far. Some coming out of quarantine, some currently in quarantine, and some just entering quarantine. I suppose the longhorns are the most likely team to reach herd immunity first (pun intended). If I’m a coach or staffer, particularly those with pre-existing conditions, I’d be checking my healthcare and sick leave policies.

    Like

    • W Cobb Dawg

      To clarify, it’s 27 players, or roughly 25% of the scholly/non-scholly roster.

      Like

    • doofusdawg

      I read something that a new study shows that the antibodies only last for three or four months … but who knows what to believe these days.

      Like

    • doofusdawg

      Just a matter of time before they say that 300 plus pound lineman are more likely to have worse outcomes if they get virus. And they probably are.

      Like

  11. FlyingPeakDawg

    Suppose a school like..IDK…Auburn…insists on doing the testing for visiting teams game day morning. Lo and behold, the opponent’s starting backfield tests positive, found later to be “false”. Chaos ensues, and the SEC and NCAA front offices have clearly proven incapable of fairly presiding over the conflict.

    Let the shit show begin.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. I don’t think I’ve heard how long someone who tests positive is contagious, so a quick google came up with this: https://www.wbur.org/commonhealth/2020/05/29/positive-test-coronavirus-not-contagious
    I have no idea if wbur is a reliable source, but this article seems to indicate that one is only contagious if they are symptomatic?
    Then I found this nugget: https://www.cnbc.com/2020/06/08/asymptomatic-coronavirus-patients-arent-spreading-new-infections-who-says.html. This seems to indicate the same?
    Once the kids get around each other, as contagious as it is, I wouldn’t be surprised if 3/4 of the program tests positive by August. How long before they can play after testing positive or are you only going to require them to sit if they are symptomatic?

    Like

    • ASEF

      It’s been proven in study after study that people are shedding loads of virus prior to showing symptoms. It’s a big reason this thing is so contagious. And a big reason masks are so effective.

      A 62 person choir in Washington held a practice back in March, before masks were recommended. No hugs, no physical contact, lots of hand sanitizer. No one showed symptoms.

      Over 50 people infected.

      Like

      • PTC DAWG

        All dead now? Or basically no symptoms at all? The latter is much more common…

        Like

      • “Yeah… but did they die?” (Before ya get all pissed at me, that’s a joke from a meme. I certainly hope no one died)
        When the Senator asks about bumps in the road I think not allowing anyone who tests positive to participate will be the cliff the bus goes over. I guessed a 75% infection rate, your example is 80ish. Players are going to test positive and some of them will be key players so my guess is you’ll see hamstrung teams playing for the sake of playing. That and the pocketbook, of course.
        I’ll not be surprised considering that COVID is not dangerous to young healthy people coaches, while paying lip service to safety, aren’t willing to take a chance on herd immunity. I’m not sure I disagree with them.

        Like

        • ASEF

          It can be dangerous to young healthy people.

          Statistically, it’s rare, but young, healthy people have died, and young, healthy people have been seriously damaged. No one quite knows why.

          I am not suggesting policy with that observation, but “low risk” and “risk free” are not the same thing.

          Like

          • You’re correct of course. I should have said relatively harmless instead of not dangerous. If my kid was on the team and he said “Coach is going to do all he can to keep us safe but he can’t guarantee it.” (Which is what I expect Kirby to say) I’d let him make the call. Then I’d put my mask on and go watch him play. These kids have poured their lives into their sport and have reached if not the pinnacle damn close to it. Let ’em play if they want. They’re all over 18. I’ll qualify that with my 17 year old that wants to jump out of airplanes and shoot guns with the Army and THAT scares me a hell of a lot more than COVID-19 does for him.
            Someone above asked who would really be hurt if the season wasn’t played. I personally don’t care about the money, I’ve got no skin in that game at all. I don’t think it’s fair not to let the kids do their thing.

            Like

            • ASEF

              There’s real upside with military service though. Not much work Covid 🙂

              I hope it goes well for him.

              Like

  13. junkyardawg41

    I think we will have a college football season but I don’t know. I would be more inclined if MLB was starting their season and had controls in place to serve as the test bed for how to approach sporting events in the US. Since MLB is looking more and more like a cancelled season, we will have to look to the NFL for its plan. My guess is we won’t see a preseason. If that becomes reality, I see a shorter college season pushed back until after the NFL starts.

    Like

  14. Ricky McDurden

    Here’s a fun talking point: when a player inevitably tests positive during the season and has to sit out a minimum 2 games (14 days), do they say it’s because of COVID or do they go with the more generic “due to illness”? Also, you know vegas is going to break its neck trying to figure out who has tested positive each week. Could you imagine, for example, if Mac Jones tested positive before the UGA game? Or Newman before Florida?

    Going to be a wild season, indeed.

    Like

  15. Is this your homework Larry?

    If COVID-19 causes teams to have star players out, random upsets, practices cancelled, games called off, etc. and thus results in Florida winning the East – will gator fans conclude that Mullen has finally exceeded CKS? We all know the answer.

    Like

    • Cdawg

      Let me ask a question. In the larger, more financially sound D1 programs, why don’t we skip to the treatment for these athletes? Convalescent plasma with antibodies from those who have recovered from Covid has been shown to be effective as a treatment. If I’m an athlete in a top-tier program, I would be asking to receive this before the season and fall practices start. Georgia could afford it, and it would prevent an outbreak by prophylaxis.

      Like

  16. ASEF

    Europe is playing soccer matches in front of empty stadiums.

    Europe as a whole has about 80 million more people than the US.

    But they also have taken a very different approach to this than we are. With very different results.

    https://mobile.twitter.com/ASlavitt/status/1273973204047069184

    Like

  17. I think we keep forging ahead and somebody somewhere somehow has to make some good decisions mid August.

    Like

  18. Normaltown Mike

    This is my prediction, and don’t tell me you can’t see it happening:

    After a loss to Bama, Georgia races off to a 7-1 start on the arm (and legs) of Jamie Newman and a punishing defense, led by Azeez & Nakobe, This includes a 35-13 drubbing of Cousin Dan and the hapless Gators.

    Then in early November the NCAA, after weeks of mounting COVID infection rates, announces the 2020 post season to be postponed, in an abundance of caution. The SEC follows this up by determining the safest choice is to cancel the remainder of the season and name the division leaders “Co-Champions of the SEC” whereby we share the SEC East crown with Tennessee (having also lost to Bama)

    Like