With their football program and athletic department already embroiled in controversy, the CSU Rams took on another body blow Monday.
They’re not playing football this fall.
Athletic director Joe Parker on Monday confirmed Stadium and ESPN reports that the Mountain West has elected to postpone football in the fall because of growing concerns over the coronavirus pandemic.
“This is certainly a disappointing development for our student-athletes, coaches, and staff who have devoted their full attention to get ready for a fall season,” Parker said via university statement. “However, as the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic has altered our landscape, we have always stressed that the health and safety of our student-athletes and community at large is the most important factor driving our decision-making processes.
“With the postponement of fall sports, we will devote our full attention to ensuring our student-athletes can have the most meaningful experience which they rightly deserve.”
The MW becomes the second FBS conference to officially nix a fall 2020 football season, following the Mid-American Conference’s announcement this past Saturday for similar reasons.
The future of the CU Buffs’ football season now hangs in the balance as the only local major college still considering a fall 2020 schedule as of late Monday afternoon. But a decision on that front could be forthcoming soon, as Pac-12 presidents are slated to meet Tuesday to discuss their plans.
Several media outlets reported that the league will decide, in tandem with the Big Ten, to forgo a fall football season, but CU athletic department officials told The Post that no formal decision had been made yet as of Monday afternoon.
Meanwhile, a surreal August for Rams players, and fans, now takes on even more uncertainty — especially where the fate of Parker and coach Steve Addazio are concerned. The football program is currently paused by Parker because of accusations of racism and abusive language, allegations that have been denied by CSU players and assistant coaches.
Parker and football coach Addazio are also currently under university investigation for allegations that the football program and department mishandled COVID-19 protocols and put student-athletes’ health at risk. Parker and Addazio have denied the charges and agreed to cooperate with the investigation, which will be led by the Kansas City-based law firm of Husch Blackwell.
The Mountain West last week had moved to a shorter, 10-game scheduling model that would have begun on Sept. 26, featuring eight conference games and up to two non-league games.