Ivy League: No Competition Until Pandemic Improves

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The Ivy League is digging in on its decision to suspend all athletic competition, saying in a statement that resuming activities would require significant changes to the state of the fight against COVID-19.

“Unfortunately, the current trends of the virus have not improved, and in fact have gotten worse,” league officials wrote in an update posted to the league’s website that was reported by The Harvard Crimson. “Students should understand that there must be significant changes in the state of the pandemic before competition becomes feasible and that a number of factors are outside institutional control.”

“Should competition become feasible this term it will, at best, result in an abbreviated, and likely significantly curtailed, competition schedule,” the update added.

In November, the Ivy League cancelled the winter sports season and delayed the start of the spring sports season to at least the end of February.

“Any possibility of spring competition will be less than a complete season and with partial teams, since not all of you were invited to live on campus,” Harvard director of athletics Erin McDermott wrote in an email to student-athletes. “For competition to be permissible, virus conditions would need to improve significantly and campus restrictions on travel and visitors would need to be loosened.” 

Harvard announced in December that only student-athletes living in the school’s dorms would be allowed to participate in spring training and competition.

McDermott said in her email that Harvard will roll out a phased approach to athletic training on campus this spring.

“The spring phasing has been altered moderately to allow for more sport-related activity earlier, and is intended as a path to competition, whenever it is deemed safe to resume,” McDermott wrote. “Moving through athletic phases will rely on campus guidelines and level progression.”

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