Big Ten cancels all spring sports due to coronavirus
A pitcher looks down during Maryland baseball's 8-11 loss to Rhode Island on Feb. 22, 2020 in the Bob "Turtle" Smith Stadium. The Big Ten Conference announced that all sports that go through the end of and beyond the academic year are now cancelled. (Julia Nikhinson/The Diamondback)
All Big Ten sporting events have been canceled, the conference announced Thursday, putting an end to winter sports as the seasons wind to a close while also shutting down spring sports as those campaigns are just getting off the ground.
The conference also announced a temporary prohibition on all recruiting on and off campuses. Shortly after, the NCAA announced it had canceled all remaining winter and spring championships.
“This decision is based on the evolving COVID-19 public health threat, our ability to ensure the events do not contribute to spread of the pandemic, and the impracticality of hosting such events at any time during this academic year given ongoing decisions by other entities,” a statement from the NCAA read.
As concern over the spread of coronavirus pervades the sports world, many leagues have postponed seasons and canceled tournaments. The NBA, NHL, MLB and MLS have all postponed their campaigns, while March Madness and the Big Ten men’s basketball tournament have been canceled.
The Big Ten isn’t alone in the move to cancel spring sports. The Ivy League first announced the cancellation of all spring sporting events Wednesday, and other leagues have followed suit.
According to a team spokesperson, all Maryland football spring practices have been postponed until further notice. Pro Day, which was scheduled for March 25, has also been postponed until further notice, a team spokesperson wrote in a message.
Now, there will be no Big Ten sporting events across the board for the remainder of the academic year — the move includes spring sports that extend beyond the semester. For Maryland, those spring sports include: men’s and women’s lacrosse, baseball and softball, women’s tennis, golf and track and field.
“The Big Ten Conference will use this time to work with the appropriate medical experts and institutional leadership to determine next steps for moving forward in regard to the COVID-19 pandemic,” the conference wrote in a statement.