The sports world was thrown into even more turmoil when NCAA conferences across the country started cancelling their fall sports season. This includes football.
Imagining a fall without Saturday football is difficult. While some major conferences may try and get a season in, the sports landscape will continue to look strange for the next few months.
As Ian and I discussed on the MHR Radio Podcast, this will impact what happens in the 2021 draft.
Obviously, players will be impacted by these moves. The one year starters won’t get a chance to impress scouts. Teams will have limited information when making decisions. It’s going to lead to a lot of missed talent and bad picks.
Ian did bring up an interesting note about the draft. The NFL has to hold the draft no later than June 2nd according to the collective bargaining agreement. While most conferences are cancelling the fall season, the door is open for spring football.
If college football moves to the spring, what happens to the 2021 NFL Draft, scheduled April 29-May 1 in Cleveland?— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) August 10, 2020
The collective bargaining agreement says each draft shall be held no later than June 2 … so any delay beyond that would require approval by the players’ union.
The way the NFL adapted the draft in 2020, it is pretty clear that the league can adjust to accommodate the situation.
The question will be about how teams can adjust. There will likely be little time for things like a the combine if there is a spring season of NCAA football. There probably won’t be things like the Senior Bowl for coaches and scouts to watch players up close. The Combine might have to be scaled back or cancelled.
The cancelling of the college football season is huge news. Players careers hang in the balance, and players across the country have called for the season to resume. Trevor Lawrence has been leading the charge, but it won’t make much difference. Whether it’s player safety, or not wanting to pay players, or worrying about liability, colleges and universities will look out for themselves.
It’s really too bad that this is where we find ourselves heading into what should be one of the best parts of the year. And the ripples will be felt for a long time throughout the sports landscape.