(CBS Local/CBS Chicago)- The college football season remains up in the air as the Big Ten and Pac-12 are reportedly leaning towards cancelling, while the ACC and SEC appear ready to forge ahead and the Big 12 remains uncertain of what to do. Amidst this conversation about the season, players across the country have united around the #WeAreUnited and #WeWantToPlay campaigns pushing for a plan to safely conduct the season and allow them to organize a players association.
President Donald Trump weighed in with his thoughts on the cancellation rumors swirling around the sport on Fox Sports Radio Tuesday with Clay Travis. The president said that he believes it would be a “tragic mistake” to cancel the season because he doesn’t believe that the athletes will have problems if infected by coronavirus.
“First of all, those people in that sport are incredible people. Some of the coaches like Nick Saban and Coach O (Ed Orgeron), how bout Coach O, he’s central casting. And Lou Holtz is a fantastic friend of mine. So many others. They’re just great people and they want to play football,” said President Trump. “These people are so powerful and so strong and not lots of body fat, maybe none in some cases and they’re very healthy people. People don’t realize it’s a tiny percentage of people who get sick. They’re old. Especially old people with heart and weight problems.”
“This attacks older people very viciously by the way. But these football players are very young, strong people physically. They’re not going to have a problem. Could it happen? I doubt it. You’re not going to see people dying,” President Trump continued. “Young people have the sniffles. The state of California, almost nobody like zero, that was young had a serious problem. I think football is making a tragic mistake.”
However, conference officials are reportedly concerned with the fact that the heart condition myocarditis can be connected to cases of COVID-19. Boston Red Sox pitcher Eduardo Rodriguez, who is just 27 years old, was shut down for the season due to doctors finding that he had a case of myocarditis following his bout with COVID-19. Indiana offensive lineman Brady Feeney’s mother detailed his battle with COVID-19 that has led to potential heart complications. Feeney tweeted on Monday that he is among those that wants to play, but “I truly believe we need it to be safe.”
Whether or not there is a college football season remains to be seen as both the Pac-12 and Big Ten are expected to vote on the matter Tuesday.