I know that the Italian soccer federation canceled or postponed games—including Serie A—this past week in northern Italy in the area where there has been an outbreak of the virus.
I was just listening on the car radio to CDC’s Director of its Center for Respiratory Diseases and Immunizations and she talked about possible measures in this country down the road including canceling any events that call for large gatherings. She did not say what the chances of this happening were; she was simply pointing out the types of significant steps that might have to be taken.
So...I suppose there’s a possibility that, if this virus spreads here and they don’t get it under control right away, sports events—since they obviously involve large gatherings of people—would be a logical type of event to cancel. Either that or possibly play games where crowds would not be permitted to attend. (And that has happened in European soccer on rare occasions for other reasons.)
Obviously, if there is a serious Coronavirus outbreak in this country, we will have a lot more to be concerned about than whether college football is played this fall—or whether the games might go forward in empty stadiums but still be televised as a diversion for fans to watch at home.
The one bit of positive news in all of this is that thankfully the fatality rate seems to be much lower than the flu.