Like just about everyone else in college football, Lincoln Riley is confident we’ll have a season. Unlike everyone else, Riley doesn’t schools should bring their players back to campus as soon as possible.
In fact, he thinks the opposite.
Saying he thinks the idea of bringing players back to campus on June 1 “one of the most ridiculous things I’ve ever heard,” Riley thinks time is college football’s greatest asset right now, and they should use as much of it as they possibly can.
— Jason Kersey (@jasonkersey) May 14, 2020
Riley’s thoughts, perhaps not coincidentally, come just hours after word broke that SEC presidents will vote next week on the possibility of bringing players back as soon as June 1. It was reported Wednesday that LSU has June 1 in mind for bringing the defending national champions back to Baton Rouge.
The thinking is clear: Schools, particularly Power 5 programs, can provide resources that many players don’t find at home — be it physical resources like food and workout equipment or simple things like the chance to be around their friends.
The flip side to that is this: The longer players are on campus, the more schools are “responsible” for keeping them virus free. It increase costs by requiring them to buy more tests, while, as Riley said, decreasing the time medical community has build up defenses against infections.
Ironically, Riley could have an ally in SEC commissioner Greg Sankey. On multiple occasions Sankey has praised the idea of taking as much time as possible to make any major decisions about playing football this year. Here he was in Sports Illustrated today:
One of the really helpful pieces of guidance provided me was from a biostatistician. It was that we’re learning more and more every day and if you look back 30 days of what you knew then and 30 days to what you’ll know down the road … if you can be patient in making major decisions, you’ll be able to gather more and more information to inform better decision making at a later time.
We’ll learn next week whether SEC presidents agree with Riley or not.
In the meantime, stay tuned to The Scoop for the latest.