The Daily Item

The Middle Atlantic Conference (MAC) presidents announced Friday morning the suspension of intercollegiate athletics competition for the fall semester.

The MAC is comprised of 18 schools in three states, including Lycoming College, Wilkes University and King’s College.

“After many long, thoughtful conversations and extensive review of the latest public health data and guidance from the NCAA, Alvernia and the rest of the Middle Atlantic Conference, have reached the difficult decision to suspend athletic competition in the fall of 2020,” said Alvernia University President John R. Loyack. “Participation in athletics is a vital component of the Alvernia student experience, but the health, safety and well-being of student-athletes, coaches and the wider Alvernia community remains our number one priority.

“The MAC Presidents are well aware of the important role athletics plays in the lives of student-athletes and are committed to exploring creative approaches and alternatives that will provide future competitive experiences for fall sport student-athletes in the spring semester as circumstances allow.”

The MAC presidents, athletics directors and the MAC COVID-19 Advisory Group will continue to evaluate the athletics landscape throughout the 2020-21 academic year to address:

n Engaging fall, winter and spring sport student-athletes in the fall term with coaches following all institutional, local and national health and safety guidelines.

n Shifting fall sport competitive seasons to the spring, insofar as possible.

n Scheduling winter sports competition beginning in 2021.

n Implementing league-wide and campus safety measures for practices and competitions when they do occur.

n Developing league-wide and institutional personal and professional development programming.

“This decision was very difficult, as we know how deep the love of the game is for our student-athletes and that intercollegiate events are an important part of campus life for our entire community,” said Dr. Andrea E. Chapdelaine, Chair of MAC President’s Council and Hood College President. “However, we are confident that our coaches and athletic staff will work with the students to build an engaging athletic experience for our student-athletes while mitigating the risk of COVID-19.”

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