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MIAA postpones conference football play, but two Michigan schools determined to play

Detroit Free Press logo Detroit Free Press 7/31/2020 Anthony Fenech and Kirkland Crawford, Detroit Free Press

The Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association has postponed the fall the conference's fall sports schedule due to the coronavirus pandemic.

On Thursday, the MIAA announced its presidents' council voted to hold off on  football, cross-country, men's and women's golf, men's and women's soccer and volleyball for "later in the academic year." 

“We recognize the deep disappointment this decision is for our student-athletes, coaches, and parents at schools that will not be competing,” MIA commissioner Penny Allen-Cook said in a released statement. “While this decision is very disappointing, our first priority is fostering safe and productive learning environments on our campuses.”

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Allen-Cook also said the conference hopes to compete in the spring "when less expensive and more accurate testing, better contact tracing and a possible vaccine for COVID-19 are available."

But a few MIAA schoo is looking to play this fall. 

Adrian College athletics has started developing independent schedules against other colleges for bass fishing, bowling, competitive cheer, cross-country, equestrian, football, golf, tennis, rowing, soccer and volleyball.

The school said in a released statement that athletic director Michael Duffy is working to find interested colleges.

“We’ve reached out to other institutions who are also looking to engage in competition this fall,” Duffy said. “More information will come on these modified schedules as it is available.”

Adrian said it will follow NCAA recommendations from the "Resocialization of Collegiate Sport: Developing Standards for Practice and Competition" document.

Calvin University announced Thursday that it, too, would seek non-conference competition in the fall. 

"Our goal at Calvin has always been to provide the best possible experience for our student-athletes," said Calvin athletic director Dr. Jim Timmer. "We hope that will include some limited competition this fall semester. At Calvin University we are committed to working within the framework laid out by NCAA, state and local officials. Our goal is to schedule competitions with other institutions that have made that same commitment and are also pursing non-conference competition this fall."

a group of football players on the field: Albion and Alma play football in the MIAA conference on Oct. 26, 2013 © DFP file photo Albion and Alma play football in the MIAA conference on Oct. 26, 2013

Calvin said that Olivet would also try to play sports in the fall. Trine (Ind.) announced would do the same. 

Albion, Alma, Hope and Kalamazoo College said they would follow the MIAA and not play any sports this fall.

The conference said it will make a decision on winter sports that begin in the fall, including men's and women's basketball, at a later date.

The MIAA is the oldest college athletic conference in the country, founded in 1888.

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This article originally appeared on Detroit Free Press: MIAA postpones conference football play, but two Michigan schools determined to play


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