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Michigan president: no sports without students on campus, expects decision to stick for the full academic year

Photo via Michigan Athletics

Photo via Michigan Athletics

Just as professional sports begin to make their return in New York, collegiate sports could be experiencing a delay in Michigan. Well, at least at the University of Michigan. The Wolverines’ president Dr. Mark Schlissel says the campus won’t allow football players to return to campus unless the general student body is also able to return, according to a new report by the Wall Street Journal.

If there is no on-campus instruction then there won’t be intercollegiate athletics, at least for Michigan,” Schlissel, a trained immunologist, said while expressing “some degree of doubt as to whether there will be college athletics [anywhere], at least in the fall.”

Schlissel’s comments come mere days after the NCAA announced it would allow voluntary on-campus athletic activities to resume on June 1, ultimately leaving the official “start” date up to each conference. The SEC announced plans to reopen June 8 (although there has not been any official announcement from UK specifically at this time), and the Big 12 released a plan to open June 15. The ACC and the Big Ten are leaving the decision up to the conferences’ schools, which is how Ohio State and Illinois have already announced plans to resume workouts in early June, while Michigan remains closed.

Michigan has been one of the states hit the hardest by Coronavirus, recording more than 5,200 deaths, according to the CDC. The state’s stay-at-home order has been extended through June 12, and the flagship school has not announced a potential reopening date.

Schlissel plans on making that decision in the “coming weeks.” He doesn’t expect the decision to change with the season.

“Any decision we make for this coming fall is likely going to be the case for the whole academic year, Schlissel continued. “What’s going to be different in January?”

[Wall Street Journal]

Article written by Maggie Davis

I love sports, podcasts, long walks on the beach and Twitter (@MaggieDavisKSR)

20 Comments for Michigan president: no sports without students on campus, expects decision to stick for the full academic year

  1. TonyMontana
    10:40 pm May 24, 2020 Permalink

    Let’s be honest here…. he just wants to avoid playing Ohio State

    • nocode96
      11:10 pm May 24, 2020 Permalink


  2. Blue Bill
    10:46 pm May 24, 2020 Permalink

    “What’s going to be different in January?”?? You mean 6 months from now? Really?

  3. Swizzle
    10:57 pm May 24, 2020 Permalink

    Theyll play, or lose for the next 10 years

    • lexattorney
      10:59 pm May 24, 2020 Permalink


  4. sharpshooter81
    11:11 pm May 24, 2020 Permalink

    This university president sounds like an idiot and clown. Let’s see if he stays true to these words if the rest of the Big 10 starts up. If that happens he will get big time pressure from big boosters with deep pockets and will change his story or he will be ousted.

  5. chris gettelfinger is not walking through that door
    11:23 pm May 24, 2020 Permalink

    In other news, the Michigan president has moved into a cave and plans to stay there his whole life.

  6. RAGE
    11:29 pm May 24, 2020 Permalink

    I just don’t really understand all of this… It is what it is play the games and if you don’t want to be at risk stay home.. If the players vote to play and people want to attend then the consequences should be on them… But just shutting the season for a virus that we now know isn’t as deadly as was first thought just seems odd… But maybe I just really want to see life resume like normal… But for people to predict what is going to happen what is going to happen in August or next January is crazy in it own right… No one knows what life holds for us tomorrow so making statements like what this president made is crazy at least to me… Also without football and the money it brings to the schools I don’t know how they can pay their teaching staffs and everything else on campus.. There will be major cutbacks and bad news for colleges all over the country

    • blueballs80
      12:40 am May 25, 2020 Permalink

      @Rage. Perhaps the university should make everyone sign a waiver in case they get sick , UK is not responsible if they want fans to attend football games. Those that do have to wear a mask. If people cannot understand the paramount of safety, then more people will get sick.

  7. Shark
    11:40 pm May 24, 2020 Permalink

    Liberal Governor, what else do you need to know. Worst hit places are ran by Democrats and sanctuary cities.

  8. Shark
    11:41 pm May 24, 2020 Permalink

    But it’s ok as long as you have your ice cream in front of,your 25,000 fridge

  9. blueballs80
    11:44 pm May 24, 2020 Permalink

    Safety is the first issue not our football fantasies.

    • UKgrad80
      11:52 pm May 24, 2020 Permalink

      Finally some one makes sense!

    • sharpshooter81
      12:56 am May 25, 2020 Permalink

      So, I am taking your comment as you support shutting down everything. How long do you think that should happen? Till there is a vaccine that may never come?

      Life has to go on now which includes sports. People take risk everyday and this is a risk that the people of this country will need to risk in order to regain control of their lively hood. We can’t live in fantasy land that says wait for a vaccine. It’s been discussed by very smart doctors that a vaccine may never come or one that may not cover the virus completely.

  10. JT55
    9:24 am May 25, 2020 Permalink

    Liberals ruin everything.

  11. Gazza
    10:44 am May 25, 2020 Permalink

    Interesting power play. This could be the pressure on the Governor to open the state. After all how many 65-95 year olds are playing for Michigan?

  12. satcheluk
    11:50 am May 25, 2020 Permalink

    One has to wonder how we revolved from a society that embraced community sacrifice for the greater good, to what we have now. I love the feeling of pride I felt when listening to my great grandparents talk about the sacrifices they made during WW1 and then the stories of my grandparents as children of the depression and WW2 when my grandfather was a casualty in Pearl Harbor and my Great Grandfather a doughboy in WW1. My father was in the AF in Vietnam and I was 4th generation in the Navy. The sacrifices of those who served was to this great nation and in this Memorial Day, I am sickened at how selfish so many are acting. Do you think your grandparents would have rioted if asked to wear a mask? No they probably spent time practicing wearing one. It’s time for a little more empathy and lot less myopathy. GFTU!

    • chris gettelfinger is not walking through that door
      3:36 pm May 25, 2020 Permalink

      The difference is the government didn’t shut down the economy during those wars and put millions of people out of work and cause thousands, maybe millions, to lose their businesses. We’re not just talking about whether to wear a mask here. Have you not seen the articles about mass worldwide starvation that is coming? Food banks have huge lines. People are hungry man, and lots of people can’t get the medical care they need because someone decided it was non-essential, even though lots of them aren’t. Add to that the suicide, etc.

  13. Looother
    4:52 pm May 25, 2020 Permalink

    What Shark said…

  14. mcp157
    5:52 pm May 25, 2020 Permalink

    Kissing the liberal behind of Michigan’s draconian governor!