The Pac-12 cancelled the football season. They cancelled all fall sports activities and any athletic competition until January 1, 2021.
What they didn’t cancel, however, was the on-field workouts and drills that (at least) the football teams can conduct. In fact, they’re allowed to continue 20-hour work weeks this fall, of course, without games on the horizon.
It didn’t take long for the world to react to that news once Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott’s announcement of allowing 20-hour weeks to conduct without games being held.
#Pac12 commissioner Larry Scott says presidents have approved 20-hour period to begin Monday, and football training camps will start as early as Aug. 17. Says the schedule has "a lot of built-in flexibility."— Adam Rittenberg (@ESPNRittenberg) July 31, 2020
The Big Ten did the same thing, as well, prompting former Alabama QB Greg McElroy to express his feelings.
So the players are required to spend 20-hours a week preparing for nothing? Man, as a CFB player, the 20-hour schedule was, at times, brutal.— Greg McElroy (@GregMcElroy) August 11, 2020
Practice wasn’t fun, but getting to play every Saturday was the Reward.
It will be very interesting to hear from the players on this. https://t.co/TM1b7siYyU
Former Washington State QB and No. 2 overall pick Ryan Leaf chimed in on top of McElroy’s statement and compared practicing 20 hours a week without a game would be similar to redshirting that season.
Did you have a redshirt year Greg?? I did, it was extremely difficult to prepare and not have the payoff of the game competition on the weekend. Luckily they’ll all be in the same boat and hold to that fellowship. It sucks all around!!— Ryan D Leaf (@RyanDLeaf) August 11, 2020
It is a harsh reality to foresee. It doesn’t seem fair to conduct 20-hour weeks, especially if they’re mandated, and then not have any ultimate goal.
It is, of course, up to the universities to decide whether or not to continue with those 20-hour weeks, and so we’ll see what Cal and head coach Justin Wilcox decides to do.