Assuming there are college sports this fall, the NCAA has decided they plan to allow athletes to put social justice statements on their jerseys this upcoming season.The vote came from the board last week, the NCAA will now join the Premier League, NBA, and NFL which as they are all beginning to resume play from their hiatuses caused by the coronavirus. The NCAA’s playing rules oversight panel determined each student-athlete will be able to sport patches on the front and messages on the back of their uniforms “to express support and voice their opinions.”The new rule will permit one patch on the front of a player’s uniform and one on the back. On the front, the patch must not exceed a size of 2¼ inches and may be used as a “commemorative/memorial patch which can include names, mascots, nicknames, logos and marks, but they all are must be intended to celebrate or memorialize people, events or other causes related to social justice.”
The new rule is subject to conference and school approval for each athlete.
“The second location is on the back of the uniform where the player name is traditionally located and, as authorized by the school or conference, will allow names/words intended to celebrate or memorialize people, events, or other causes. The names or words may vary by team member,” said the NCAA in an official statement.
This is, of course, if college sports even happen. The NBA and the NHL have both (to this point) had successful bouts with their bubbles. It will be virtually impossible to recreate this for college sports, so they will have to resort to something close to what the MLB has done thus far. The bad news with that is, the MLB had one of its teams, the Miami Marlins have an outbreak where 20 people contracted the virus and have to have all games canceled for a week. As a precautionary measure, the team they were playing against, the Philadelphia Phillies, also had their games canceled for four days. And as I type this, the St. Louis Cardinals just had a player test positive.
So the sports with no real bubble is off to a rough start, so here’s to hoping it can safely happen. If not, it will be a long Fall and Winter with no college football.