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Athletes depart football programs for Fall 2020 season

EKU Athletics

EKU Athletics

COVID-19 has created an uncertain future for collegiate athletics around the country, an uncertainty felt to a great degree by football student-athletes.

Some collegiate athletes, however, have taken their future and their health into their own hands.

Earlier this week, EKU kicker Landon White released a statement regarding his departure from the program, stating concerns about health and safety procedures being followed (or not being followed) by program leaders, including coaches who, according to White, “do not care about player safety.”

White’s allegations prompted response from EKU Athletic Director Matt Roan, who condemned the statements as “misinformed and misguided.”

White’s departure was followed by another EKU starter, defensive lineman Dillon Denault, leaving the program on Friday. Denault was then followed by offensive lineman Graham Ashkettle and defensive lineman Tre Turner, totaling the program loss at four players citing COVID-19 concerns.

EKU is not the only program to lose players because of health concerns.

Michigan State University’s top offensive lineman Jordan Reid opted out of his senior season due to uncertainties regarding COVID-19, releasing this statement on Friday:

Some athletes have chosen to forego the 2020 season for a slightly-different reason – to prepare to enter the 2021 NFL Draft. Minnesota’s Rashod Batemen along with Purdue’s Rondale Moore will both be entering the draft in 2021 rather than competing in a college football season plagued with doubt and concern. Neither explicitly cited coronavirus as a factor in their respective decisions.

The SEC Network’s Peter Burns aired out his thoughts on the matter on Twitter, which included some numbers for context: 45 players (out of over 10,000) have opted out of the upcoming college football season, according to Athlon Sports. Burns’ entire thread is linked here.

This is the first time in recent history players are having to make a personal decision based on these safety concerns, and hopefully it will be the last.

2020, when will you ever end?

Article written by Abbigale Harrison

Covering KY news from DC. This should be fun. Twitter: @theabbiharrison

6 Comments for Athletes depart football programs for Fall 2020 season



  1. Steady
    5:36 pm August 9, 2020 Permalink

    Kicker? We talking about a kicker?

    I opted out too, of watching MLB, NFL, NBA, NASCAR…so I understand.



  2. Lip Man 1
    6:18 pm August 9, 2020 Permalink

    Orlando Sentinel reporting today UCF players refuse to practice or play until certain demands are met. Have been trying to put together a group in the American Conference much like what is happening in the Big-10 and the Pac-12.



  3. light my fire
    6:37 pm August 9, 2020 Permalink

    Thanks China for the virus



    • satcheluk
      9:18 pm August 9, 2020 Permalink

      Given that we have less than 5% of the world’s population and we have about 25% of the world’s infections and deaths, I’d say we own it now. Maybe someday we’ll have leaders who take these risks seriously and maybe someday we’ll have citizens who care about the greater good rather than getting bent out of shape about personal inconvenience. Maybe.



    • Corder
      10:11 pm August 9, 2020 Permalink

      Haha. You people never stop blaming others but yet when somebody says China is the reason for all of this, you say don’t blame them. Amazing logic.



    • chris gettelfinger is not walking through that door
      10:14 am August 10, 2020 Permalink

      satchel, people lost jobs and businesses by the millions man. Alcohol consumption is up, suicides are up. We can agree to disagree on some details, but please stop saying people are only upset because they’re bored that nothing good is on Netflix or because they have to wear a mask. It just isn’t true.

      And even if the US didn’t do a great job with this, China is still ultimately responsible.