On Friday afternoon, the Mid-American Conference officially approved the return of football for this fall. There will be a six-game, conference-only schedule as well as the MAC Championship Game at Ford Field at the end of the season.
COVID-19 testing protocols begin on October 5th, as players and staff members will be required to take four tests per week. This is a huge step for the first D-1 conference that deemed it not possible to play fall football safely. Player safety is and always will be the top priority of the MAC, but after seeing all the other conferences return to play, it was clear there was a path to making this happen and they executed that plan today.
While this is an exciting moment for the MAC, it’s important to keep in mind that COVID-19 testing and protocols will have to be followed vigorously in order for the players to take the field on upcoming Saturdays.
I was invited to the official press conference with Northern Illinois Athletic Director Sean Frazier and head football coach Thomas Hammock this evening, so I will have a more in-depth analysis of the return-to-play plan afterward.