The Big Ten’s reversal on a fall football season has not changed the Mountain West’s stance.
The Colorado Springs-based conference released a statement from commissioner Craig Thompson on Wednesday that said nothing to indicate a return is imminent.
“Multiple subgroups within the conference are working daily on solutions to the existing challenges in order to facilitate a return to play for Mountain West football, and other conference sport programs, at the earliest possible opportunity,” the statement said. “This includes finalizing a plan for frequent, rapid-response testing and continuing to monitor the status of public health directives in our MW states and communities.”
The Mountain West announced the postponement of fall sports in early August, around the same time as the Big Ten, Pac-12 and Mid-American Conference. The leagues at that time said they hoped to play a spring season.
The Big Ten is the first to change that decision, announcing Wednesday that it will begin a football season from Oct. 23-24.
MAC commissioner Jon Steinbrecher said his league currently has "no plans to play a fall season in any sport. We are focused on providing our fall student-athletes meaningful competitive experiences in the spring.”
While the Mountain West publicly offered no further explanation, contrasting hints were provided as to what will come next.
Stadium reporter Brett McMurphy said he was told it was unlikely the Mountain West will play a fall season. However, UNLV football coach Marcus Arroyo tweeted that “I’m FIRED UP about our most recent Mountain West conversations,” followed by emojis of eyeballs and a face with a mouth closed by a zipper. He added, “Let’s ‘stamp’ the plan and ROLL!!”
While the Mountain West’s postponement impacts Colorado State and 10 other members in the league, Air Force has been given the go-ahead to a two-game season against service academy rivals Navy (Oct. 3) and Army (Nov. 7).