Days after the Ivy League announced the cancellation of all fall athletics, many conferences across all divisions of the NCAA have made moves to limit schools to playing only other conference teams, including Division III North Coast Athletic Conference, which Wabash College has belonged to since 1998.
“In recognition of the unprecedented challenges of COVID-19, the North Coast Athletic Conference (NCAC) Presidents’ Council has approved the following principles, which will guide fall competition for NCAC members,” the NCAC said in a press release on Thursday.
The announcement comes one day after Oberlin, a membered school since 1984 based in Ohio announced they would be canceling all fall sports.
The statement from the NCAC said members will commit to consistent baseline health and safety protocols, as determined by public health professionals and institutional medical professionals.
In addition to conference only games, schools will play schedules based on geographical groupings that eliminate overnight travel.
“NCAC members recognize that our plans are fluid and subject to change as conditions evolve in order to responsibly protect our communities,” the press release said. “Decisions for the winter and spring championships seasons will be made in early fall.”
Division III athletics along with sports all across the nation came to a halt in mid March due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The statement also said that the NCAC will move forward with a target date of Sep. 18 as the first permissible contest date.
Wabash was scheduled to play Rose Hulman on Sep. 5, a non-conference opponent, to open up the 2020 football season and usher in the new Frank Navarro Field at Little Giant Stadium.