Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence went on Twitter to share his thoughts about why there needs to be a college football season for 2020. It was a three tweet thread that said the following:
People are at just as much, if not more risk, if we don’t play. Players will all be sent home to their own communities where social distancing is highly unlikely and medical care and expenses will be placed on the families if they were to contract covid19.
Not to mention the players coming from situations that are not good for them/ their future and having to go back to that. Football is a safe haven for so many people. We are more likely to get the virus in everyday life than playing football.
Having a season also incentivizes players being safe and taking all of the right precautions to try to avoid contracting covid because the season/ teammates safety is on the line. Without the season, as we’ve seen already, people will not social distance or wear masks and take the proper precautions.
When I read this over a couple times, I realized that a majority of Trevor Lawrence’s reasons for a college football season are incorrect. Let’s break down his statement tweet by tweet.
Let’s start off with his first tweet about the risk increasing if there is no season. This is false, people are at a much higher risk if a college football season is played. Players have made their dissatisfaction with the NCAA heard. There are too many people involved in football at the NCAA level. There are 125 schools that play division 1 FCS. College football teams can carry over 100 players on their active roster. If it’s 60-70 active players per game and only active players travel, that’s still 60-70 players. Add the coaching staff, medical staff and nutritionists it’s quite possible to have between 90 and 100 people per team. We’ll go low with 90 and for all 125 schools, that’s approximately 11,250 that would need to be in a hypothetical bubble. To put that into perspective, there have been 7,245 total tests done in the NHL Playoff bubble. That bubble spans over two hub cities. There’s simply too many people to have a bubble or to have daily testing, both would likely be required for there to be a season. If not both then daily testing is a must. Also, it is impossible to social distance while playing football. It takes 11 people to fill one side of a football field. It takes 12 for an entire ice hockey arena and 10 for a basketball court. The numbers make it impossible to social distance or remain in small groups. Football not only puts players at risk but their families, friends and everyone on campus. The travel required and the number of people involved in the sport make football extremely dangerous for everyone involved.
As for the second tweet, I can’t speak on the first part about the situations that players come from or that it is a safe haven for people. However, I can say that players will be more likely to get the virus while playing football simply because of reasons I’ve already stated. It is impossible to social distance while playing football. The travel required adds an increased risk to all players, staff and anyone else who travels with the team or who are connected to them. Travel bans were placed because travelling increased the spread of the virus. Social distancing was put in place because large groups of people increased the spread of the virus. Everything that was banned and advised against will be done if there is a college football season.
Now time for the final tweet. If the lives of the player and their loved ones was not enough of an incentive for people to avoid contracting the virus then nothing will be enough. It’s been as bad as it has been without college football, without sports and without hundreds of people travelling. Imagine if there is college football with hundreds of people travelling. The spring and summer was the time to wear a mask and take precautions to stop the virus so college football could happen. Now it’s too late for the NCAA to play. There is no plan, the virus has infected too many and there’s nowhere near enough tests for a season to be successful.
I respect Trevor Lawrence as a player, but it’s impossible for me to agree with his stance on why college football should be played. Saying that people are at a greater risk if football is not played is just ridiculous. I don’t understand how anyone can think that.