Torrent of Public criticism was directed at Kevin Warren following the decision to suspend the season. Whether that’s the majority of the fans, or just the loudest, Warren made an easy target: an inexperienced new commissioner in college football who oversaw the closure of one of the Midwest’s most visible strongholds of tradition. No football season meant cancellation of competitive games, such as Little Brown Jug (Michigan vs. Minnesota) and Old Oaken Bucket (Indiana vs. Purdue), which have been played for a century or more.
In fact, of course, Warren didn’t cancel anything – he didn’t have that power. But the presidents kept the details of their vote secret, perhaps because no one wanted to be against football. As a result, speculation continued that Warren made a one-sided decision. He also did not escape noticing that his son, Bowers Warren, played a large-scale receiver in Mississippi, a Southeastern US affiliate that would soon start its season. “Isn’t it ironic,” said Clay Travis, Fox Sports Radio personality, “The son of the Big Ten commissioner has a chance to decide whether or not to play college football, that’s a decision not.” The top ten athletes, he said, are awarded to do their sports in the fall
Fans, coach columnists, players and parents reverberate. At a video conference the day after the decision was announced, Ryan Day, the Ohio State football coach, struggled to contain his emotions. As with other programs across the province, Day and his athletes devoted many hours to preparing for a season in tough conditions, paying strict attention to the Covid-19 protocol that included showering in their rooms and avoiding all unnecessary social contacts. Suddenly, this season has disappeared from under them. “You don’t wake up the next morning and everything is fine,” Dai said. “It’s okay. It’s devastating.” Fields, a quarterback in Ohio, posted an online petition demanding that the conference schedule for 2020 be immediately reinstated. By the next day, she had 250,000 signatures. Eight footballers from Nebraska He filed a lawsuit Against Big Ten, he criticized the process through which the season was postponed as “flawed and mysterious”. A group calling itself Big 10 Parents United has been published Open letter Addressed to Warren, expressing a “total distrust” of his leadership. Warren’s response to the criticism confirmed that the convention presidents had voted and that the result was “largely in support of the postponement of the Fall Sports.” He insisted that the vote would not be reviewed.
On the last day in August, Timothy Pataki, an aide to President Trump, called Warren on his mobile phone. Pataki told him the president wanted to talk to him the next morning. There was little doubt as to what he wanted to say. Trump wrote on Twitter two days ago: “It is a shame that Big Teen does not play football.” “Let them play.” After Pataki’s call, Warren prepared for his conversation with the President. His wife Greta said: “Stay open-minded.”
Trump’s motivations were easy to understand. There was a good chance that the next election would be decided in the heart of the Big Ten; The states of Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Ohio, which each had at least one conference member, were all considered swing states. If Trump manages to convince the Big Ten to play a football season, or even … Appears To do so, his electoral prospects will likely benefit. He didn’t say a word about Pac-12, which had also decided to postpone its season. But California, Oregon and Washington, where this conference is centered, is consistently blue.
On the morning of September 1, when the number of confirmed coronavirus cases across America exceeded six million, the White House called Warren and Put Trump to the test. The conversation lasted 15 minutes. Trump has offered to provide any assistance possible to revive the Big Ten season. Warren replied that he would be in touch if he needed anything. “On the line one yard!” Trump tweeted later that morning.
They weren’t that close. But despite Warren’s insistence that the decision was final, the conference’s position actually began to change. In the days following the vote that halted the season, Warren created a Back-to-Competition Task Force, which included subcommittees dedicated to medical issues, scheduling, and television. That put presidents like Samuel Stanley of Michigan, an infectious disease specialist, on the same calls with athletes directors and doctors. (Later, Warren admits, that may have been something he should have done months ago.) The task force was supposed to help lead the convention toward a decision to eventually play the 2020 soccer season – possibly starting in January, or in the spring. Most other sports, when competing for the championships between colleges, are those organized by the National Collegiate Athletic Association.