The Canadian Football League on Wednesday announced it will delay the start of its 2020 season until September at the earliest — if the season happens at all. The league allowed for the possibility that the 2020 campaign could be canceled altogether, and that option remains on the table.

The league’s statement is below:

It now appears the earliest the CFL might return to play – for a shortened but meaningful season – is this September.

Of course, a final decision on whether that will indeed happen will depend on what governments tell us is safe for our players and fans.

But barring some huge development, like a vaccine for COVID-19, it now seems clear we can rule out playing games this summer. There are several reasons, including the continuing restrictions on assemblies, travel and border crossings. Notably, several provinces and municipalities have already decided to prohibit until September 1st, all sporting events featuring large gatherings. 

We know there is a great deal of interest in whether we might play with or without fans, or with social distancing rules in place. We are examining all possibilities with both public safety and financial viability in mind. It’s just too soon to speculate on what a return to play in September might look like.

Please note that we are not announcing or promising a return this fall. We are just letting our fans know this remains one of the remaining possible scenarios for 2020. A cancelled season is also possible. Again, it’s too soon to make a sure call at this point.

The season was slated to begin June 11 and conclude with the 108th Grey Cup on Nov. 22 in Saskatchewan.

The Grey Cup, if it happens, will not take place in Saskatchewan, and instead be held at the home of the team with the best record. Saskatchewan has been awarded the 2022 Grey Cup as compensation.

As always, stay tuned to The Scoop for the latest.

National columnist - Zach joined the staff in 2012...and has been attempting to improve Doug and Scott's writing ability ever since (to little avail). Outside of football season, you can find him watching the San Antonio Spurs reading Game of Thrones fan theories.