Football among fall university sports to be cancelled due to COVID-19 pandemic

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The Western Mustangs quest to the 2020 Vanier Cup has ended, months before the season was scheduled to kick off.

U Sports, the national governing body for university sports, announced Monday that the fall season has been cancelled.

Dr. Taryn Taylor, U Sports Chief Medical Officer, says there was no way for them to go ahead with the fall season safely.

“Although the Canadian sport system is working together to create evidence-based return to training, practice and competition protocols, it is not currently feasible or safe due to the COVID-19 Pandemic for U Sports to be able to offer fall championships given the academic realities of student-sport.”

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The decision followed an announcement by Ontario University Athletics (OUA), cancelling all sanctioned sports for the remainder of 2020, hoping to return to place in the second term early next year.

“While this has been a challenging course of action for all involved, the health and safety of our student-athletes and all participants remain paramount,” said OUA President and CEO Gord Grace.

“Even though we will not have the opportunity to celebrate our student-athletes on the field during the first Term, they remain at the heart of what our organization is about and we will continue to work toward achieving a safe return to play when the time is right to do so.”

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The Atlantic conference also announced they were canceling varsity sports for the remainder of the year. Canada West will says they will not operate team sports for the rest of the calendar year, and will make a decision on golf, cross-country and swimming by July 15.

U Sports said in a statement that athletes whose national championships are cancelled will not lose a year of eligibility.

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