Skull Session: The Big Ten Doesn't Yet Have The Votes to Start in October, Justin Fields is Still Practicing For the Season, and Ohio State Continues to Be an NFL Assembly Line

By Kevin Harrish on September 9, 2020 at 4:59 am
Block O is ready in today's skull session.

Just like football season, r/CFB's College Football Empires Map is going on without the Big Ten, with Ohio mostly split like a pie between Cincinnati, Pitt and Marshall, just as we all dreamed.

But don't worry, if the Big Ten does reverse course and plays this fall, there is a very good and correct plan to amend the map.

Word of the Day: Elucidation.

 ELEPHANT IN THE ROOM. Another day went by without hearing something from the Big Ten, but that doesn't necessarily mean nothing's happening, it just means that nothing's changed.

According to many reports yesterday, including the Toledo BladeABC6Lettermen Row, the Lincoln Journal Star, and Dan Patrick, there aren't yet enough votes from Presidents and Chancellors in favor of a fall football season.

Could that still change? Probably! But if football's going to start in a month, or even in November, we're going to need to have some decisions soon.

 STILL GRINDING. Ohio State's recent practice photos included suspiciously few images of a particular former five-star quarterback from Kennesaw, Georgia who may or may not be a few months from becoming a multi-millionaire regardless of if he plays another college snap.

But fear not! Just like you, it seems Justin Fields is still holding out hope that the Buckeyes will be playing football this fall.

I love that this Tweet essentially doubles as a subtle proof of life announcement for all of Buckeye fans. And as the blogger who fields (pun totally intended) at least three "is Justin Fields opting out???" DMs a day, I thoroughly appreciate it!

 NFL ASSEMBLY LINE. Another year, another 50 or so Buckeyes on active NFL rosters. The only crime is that we're three men short of a 53-man roster, which means we'll have to just pump a few more players into The League next year to make up for it.

And folks wonder why Ohio State has such a foothold in Texas. It ain't a hard sell when you can walk into a five-star #teen's house and kindly inform him that you produce about as much NFL talent as the top two in-state teams combined. 

Also, Michigan sitting at No. 5 on this list is baffling, considering, well... *gestures wildly at the past two decades of Wolverine football*

 ATLANTIS IS GOING LAND-LOCKED. Ohio State was slated to take part in the Battle 4 Atlantis hoops showdown in the Bahamas, but it the Very Bad Virus had other, considerably shittier plans.

I have nothing against South Dakota. It’s certainly among my 49 favorite states in the union. But if a forced move from the Bahamas to South Dakota doesn't embody everything that is 2020, I'm not sure what does.

 IS THIS TOO HARD? The Mountain West ain't got much on the Big Ten, but holy hell could the oldest Division I collegiate athletic conference take some pointers on how to be transparent.

Would this really be a terribly difficult update to give?

The August 10 decision by the Mountain West Board of Directors to postpone 2020 fall sports and MW championship events due to the COVID-19 pandemic crisis was based upon multiple challenges.  Widespread and increasing prevalence of the disease in parts of the MW footprint, unknowns regarding the health outcomes related to the virus, testing capacity limitations and variable travel restrictions were among the primary considerations.  Nearly a month later many of these same challenges remain, such as virus spread and the status of state and local guidelines, and continue to be beyond the control of the Conference and its member institutions.

Within that environment, however, the Mountain West has been working diligently to identify a viable path forward to resume athletic competition at the appropriate time.  Physical and mental health and well-being for the Conference’s student-athletes and staff remains the priority in these efforts.  The MW Board of Directors, Athletic Directors, Health & Safety Advisory Committee, Conference staff, institutional athletics administrators, coaches and student-athlete representatives have been meeting frequently to consider new scheduling models, enhanced medical protocols and revised management plans that can facilitate a responsible return to play. 

These concepts are being adapted to fit within NCAA parameters expected to be acted upon by the NCAA Division I Council during its September 16 meeting, including frameworks for football, men’s & women’s basketball and rescheduled fall sports.  Other winter sports and spring sports seasons are currently expected to proceed as originally planned and would be conducted concurrently with the rescheduled sports in what would be a robust spring offering. On a parallel track, negotiations are ongoing to secure the necessary testing arrangements and put in place appropriate health guidelines.  Every effort is being made to overcome the existing multi-state obstacles within this complex issue to enable a data-driven decision that maximizes the opportunity for the Mountain West’s student-athletes to compete.

The statement didn't even say anything of real substance or provide any concrete answers, but it's something real that doesn't allow some randoms on Twitter to trumpet sources that don't exist to report news that isn't real.

 SONG OF THE DAY. "Everyday" by Buddy Holly.

 NOT STICKING TO SPORTS. How a group of punks scammed ‘Jerry Springer’ and became DIY legends... Movie star Sean Penn, drug lord El Chapo and a failed marine raid... A lawyer is disbarred after a history of indecent exposure and voyeurism... A World War II veteran's wish is granted – his casket will be painted like a pack of Juicy Fruit... The daring nun who hid and saved 83 Jewish children... The 10,000-year clock... Hundreds of Americans planted Chinese mystery seeds...

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