The Missouri Valley Conference announced Monday afternoon that its fall sports season has been delayed until Sept. 18.
MVC schools will complete a conference-only schedule in volleyball and soccer. Cross country, tennis and golf may take place against nonconference opponents, provided that they meet the necessary safety specifications as outlined in the NCAA’s Resocialization of College Sports Guidelines.
This decision does not include football-playing institutions that compete in leagues with separate governing bodies (members of the Pioneer Football League and the Missouri Valley Football Conference).
The Missouri Valley Football Conference announced Monday that the conference will continue to use patience before modifying the 2020 season.
“The MVFC and its Presidents Council will continue to monitor national developments and, if necessary, will consider additional action as dictated by circumstances,” the league noted in a Monday release.
At this time, the MVC noted schedules for winter and spring sports are not impacted. MVC championship models for fall sports as previously announced are also not impacted.
UNI’s football program began Phase III workouts Friday which is a two-week window the NCAA created as an install time for the time that was lost by teams missing the 15 spring practices.
Phase III included 20 permissible hours of contact between the staff and athletes
- Up to eight hours per week weight training and conditioning.
- Up to six hours per week for walk-throughs, which may include the use of a football.
- Up to six hours per week for meetings, which may include film review, team meetings, position meetings and one-on-one meetings.
“We were told to continue to prepare like we were having a season,” UNI head football coach Mark Farley said. “Everybody is still in kind of wait and see mode. Each day is giving us a little bit more direction. We just got to wait and see with patience. That is the best word we can use right now.”
UNI hopes to continue to progress to starting preseason camp on Aug. 7 which is Phase IV of the NCAA’s return to play plan. This phase usually starts 29 days before a team’s season opener.
“We’ve gotten to move toward football related activities,” Farley said. “But we have to stay on point with our protocols, and even clean up some of our procedures. Everybody has to have a stake in it and not just a handful of guys can be doing it right, everybody has to be doing it right.
“For the sake of our guys, if they want to play, we got to do it safely and correctly. We’ve got to clear Phase III before we can get to Phase IV and right now we are just looking to win Phase III.”
Farley added the majority of his team is in Cedar Falls and going through workouts.
“We have some guys from distance that are not here, but not many. The majority of them are here,” he said.
Farley also added there is a team of UNI athletic administration working hard on a potential replacement for its canceled Sept. 5 game against Iowa, which the Panthers lost after the Big Ten Conference elected to go to a conference-only football schedule. Farley said there are multiple opponent options on the table.
UNI’s season opener is currently scheduled for Sept. 12 at Idaho State. The Panthers’ home opener is set for Sept. 19 against Weber State. Defending national champion North Dakota State kicks off MVFC play on Sept. 26 inside the UNI-Dome.
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