MAC fall sports pushed back

Chicago Sun-Times - - BY THE NUMBERS - Sun-Times wires

The Mid-Amer­i­can Con­fer­ence an­nounced Thurs­day it will de­lay the start of its fall sports to Sept. 3 — a de­ci­sion that will af­fect field hockey, men’s and women’s soc­cer, women’s volleyball and men’s and women’s cross coun­try. It ap­plies to ex­hi­bi­tion and non­con­fer­ence games and aligns with the sched­uled start of the foot­ball sea­son.

North­ern Illi­nois pres­i­dent Lisa Freeman and

Sean T. Fra­zier, the school’s as­so­ciate vice pres­i­dent and direc­tor of ath­let­ics, re­leased a state­ment:

“As we con­tinue to eval­u­ate and mon­i­tor the im­pact of COVID-19 on col­lege ath­let­ics, our first con­sid­er­a­tion has been and will con­tinue to be the health and safety of North­ern Illi­nois Univer­sity stu­den­tath­letes, coaches, staff and all who may be af­fected.

“To­day’s an­nounce­ment by the Mid-Amer­i­can Con­fer­ence to push back the start of all 2020 fall sports sea­sons pro­vides us with ad­di­tional time to de­ter­mine the best — and safest — course of ac­tion.”

The NCAA handed down its lat­est guide­lines for play­ing through the pan­demic while also sound­ing an alarm: The prospect of hav­ing a fall se­mes­ter with foot­ball and other sports is look­ing grim.

If games can go on, the NCAA said ath­letes should be tested for the coro­n­avirus no more than 72 hours be­fore they play, play­ers with high-risk ex­po­sure should be quar­an­tined for 14 days, and every­body on side­lines should wear a mask. Ver­sa­tile 6-6 Waubon­sie Val­ley for­ward Ben

Sch­wieger com­mit­ted to Loy­ola, his top pick since the recruiting process be­gan.

MIS­CEL­LA­NEOUS Tiger in the hunt at Muir­field Vil­lage

Tiger Woods opened with a 10-foot birdie and fin­ished with a 15-foot birdie for a 1-un­der 71, leav­ing him five shots be­hind leader Tony Finau af­ter the first round of the Me­mo­rial in Dublin, Ohio. Finau fin­ished with seven birdies over his last 10 holes.

Ryan Palmer was a stroke be­hind him.

The wind was strong and of­ten changed di­rec­tion. That showed in the scor­ing. Only seven play­ers broke 70, com­pared with 35 rounds in the 60s for the first round of the Work­day Char­ity Open last week at Muir­field.

Parts of Rogers Place in Ed­mon­ton were flooded by a storm, but the Oil­ers said the dam­age wouldn’t af­fect plans to use the arena as an NHL hub when the sea­son re­sumes. The Black­hawks will play the Oil­ers there in a five-game se­ries.

Masahiro Tanaka threw a 30-pitch bullpen ses­sion in his first mound ap­pear­ance since he was struck by a line drive off the bat of Yan­kees team­mate Gian­carlo Stan­ton on July 4. He re­mains un­cer­tain for his first turn through the ro­ta­tion.

Ser­ena Wil­liams is plan­ning to re­turn to com­pe­ti­tion at a new hard-court tour­na­ment in Ken­tucky called the Top Seed Open next month. She hasn’t played since the Fed Cup in Fe­bru­ary.

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