The University of Florida, along with the rest of the SEC, will suspend on-campus sports activities until April 15. Florida Athletic Director Scott Stricklin said in a press conference on March 13 that there is a chance that the suspension could last longer than that.
The suspension is in response to the spread of the coronavirus across the United States.
Originally, the SEC announced on March 12 that all competition would be suspended until March 30. However, this will be pushed back with other delays as well. Team meetings will conclude no later than March 30 at 5 p.m.
Earlier this week, UF encouraged all students to return home if possible.
Student-athletes are now being encouraged to do the same. Stricklin said students who choose to stay will have access to training rooms. The athletic department will also continue to “provide health, nutrition, mental health counseling and academic support during this time.”
Stricklin said the change in mindset over the last 48 hours has led to these decisions.
Stricklin said that “it doesn’t make sense” to put hundreds of athletes and staff at risk to travel and play games.
The spring game for Florida Football remains up in the air, but it is unlikely to happen.
Stricklin encouraged everyone to follow CDC guidelines by practicing good hygiene and social distancing and added that right now, getting through this tough time is the priority.
This decision to suspend practices and games is part of the greater movement to put sports on the back burner while the world combats the virus. It might be some time–no one really has an idea as of now when–before the games we love will be back and here to provide us with the distraction from life it always gave us.