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The Lookout | August 4, 2020

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Maddy’s Message: football in the fall?

Maddy’s Message: football in the fall? FB at MSU FB at Alabama FB at MSU FB at Rose Bowl
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By Maddy Warren
Editor In Chief

College football is something many Americans look forward to watching each fall.

Whether it’s a college student, the parent of a college athlete, an alumnus supporting their alma mater, or just someone who loves sports, one can find all of them at a tailgate on a Saturday in the fall.

I come from a family that adores football and, over the years, I have grown to love it as much as anyone. Last season I attended three college football games; two at Michigan State University and one at the University of Alabama.

I have lived in the East Lansing area for my entire life and have been a Michigan State football fan for years.

There is no denying that I would be upset if the season had to be postponed or canceled altogether due to COVID-19 concerns. To be honest, I am a little worried about the repercussions of a canceled season. A lot of the schools and universities rely heavily on football for its funding.

Without a season this fall, colleges will miss out on a massive amount of money. It could end up hurting not just sports, but other areas of the colleges. 

However, as I hear about the number of cases of COVID-19 that are spiking across the country after re-openings – especially the 14 new cases linked to Harper’s Bar on MSU’s campus – I am wondering: Is it worth it?

In recent data, Michigan is one of two states (the other being New York) on track to containing COVID-19.

I cannot help but feel as though putting 75,000 people in Spartan Stadium or 100,000 people in the Big House at the University of Michigan would undo everything Michiganders have done over the past four months.

Many universities already decided they will send their students back to campus this fall. Some classes will remain online, while social distancing measures will be implemented for ones that are face-to-face. That in itself will be a challenge.

So, it seems like it would be best to limit the amount of contact, as opposed to continuing with the football season. Having hundreds of students and fans hanging out at tailgates, before cramming together in a stadium to watch a game every weekend, does not seem safe at all.

If schools can find an alternative way to generate funds this year – as unfortunate as that is – that might be the best bet to ensure the health and safety of the players, coaches, students and fans.

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