3:16 PM ET
The Mid-American Conference presidents will meet Saturday to review a possible fall football season as momentum builds around the league to get back on the field, sources told ESPN.
The Toledo Blade, which first reported the presidents’ meeting, reported the MAC is considering a six- or eight-game fall schedule that would begin Oct. 24 and culminate with a conference championship game at Detroit’s Ford Field.
A MAC source confirmed to ESPN that a six- or eight-game season is the most realistic option, with another source telling ESPN there has been “real positive movement” in the past 24 hours.
The MAC on Aug. 8 became the first FBS conference to postpone the fall football season because of concerns about the coronavirus pandemic. The league has studied the spring as an option for starting the season.
On Wednesday, after the Big Ten announced its fall football season, MAC commissioner Jon Steinbrecher said his conference had “no plans to play a fall season in any sport.” On Thursday, Steinbrecher told ESPN that the MAC was working with its members “to determine the appropriate course of action moving forward.”
Kent State coach Sean Lewis on Thursday asked the MAC to revisit its decision in a message posted on Twitter.
“Considering recent developments in sports and in the medical world, we must revisit the decision to cancel the 2020 season,” Lewis wrote. “Other universities have clearly demonstrated that our student-athletes’ health may be best safeguarded within the confines of our football program where we have the best medical resources available.”
Lewis urged MAC leaders to reach out to those from the Big Ten about best practices and safety protocols.
“Our players want to play,” Lewis said in the post. “They have earned the right to play and I feel we must exhaust all options for them to do so.”
Among the challenges for the MAC with a potential fall season would be securing an agreement for rapid testing and financing the testing.
ESPN’s Heather Dinich contributed to this report.