CEDAR RAPIDS – While NCAA Division III conferences nationwide have already canceled fall sports, the American Rivers Conference plans to continue competition as scheduled.
A-R-C leaders have met multiple times since late spring to monitor the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and its ramifications for athletics.
Last week the conference’s Presidents Council committed once again to proceeding with conference competition, using a reduced schedule in football and single round-robin schedules in other sports. The conference sponsors fall sports in men’s and women’s cross country, football, women’s golf, men’s and women’s soccer, women’s tennis, and volleyball.
Aside from Nebraska Wesleyan, A-R-C members Wartburg, Luther, Coe, Central, Simpson, Buena Vista, Loras and the University of Dubuque are located within Iowa’s borders.
Schedules will be announced as soon as the revised drafts pass through the conference’s governance groups. The Presidents Council and conference leadership will continue to monitor public health in the region and will adjust the schedules accordingly.
Further, non-conference competition is permitted at the discretion of the conference’s nine institutions. Any changes in conference-tournament format will be announced with the revised sports schedules.
The Midwest Conference that includes NCAA Division III Iowa colleges Cornell and Grinnell announced on Monday that it will suspend all league competition for fall and winter sports until Dec. 31. Also on Monday, the Northern Sun Conference that includes NCAA Division II Upper Iowa announced a suspension of competition until Sept. 26 for football, volleyball and Oct. 2 for soccer.
The American Rivers Conference Presidents Council also took action on its COVID-19 guidelines for return to campus, practice and competition. That document emphasizes local and state guidelines as best practices for the health and safety of A-R-C student-athletes, coaches, and support staff. An “action team” was convened last month to draft the guidelines that were approved by the Presidents Council last week.
The conference noted in a Tuesday statement that it will make further announcements as appropriate.
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