TERRE HAUTE — Friday was a dismal day for Indiana college football. First Butler University announced it would not play this fall, then late in the evening, Indiana State said there would be no gridiron action for the Sycamores this fall.
It's still possible ISU will play football in the spring.
Indiana State is in the Missouri Valley Football Conference and the league decided Friday night to postpone the conference season, with spring games a possibility.
"This is a decision we had to make, especially after hearing from our student-athletes," ISU President Deborah Curtis said. "We had two non-conference games that would have been beneficial financially. But now and always, our primary concern is the health and safety of the student-athletes."
"We all want college football as usual, and that will happen eventually," said Sherard Clinkscales, ISU Director of Athletics. "But this isn't the time, regardless of money. Our priority is the health of our student-athletes. They've expressed themselves and we've been vigilant in monitoring the situation."
Said ISU Head Football Coach Curt Mallory, "I am heartbroken for our football team right now, but postponing the fall season was the right decision. The safety and wellbeing of our student-athletes is and always will be our top priority. We will now work toward a possible spring football season and championship."
The football team was already having COVID-19 issues as practice began. The Sycamores suspended football practice and conditioning earlier this week for 14-days after six players tested positive for the virus.
The players are quarantined, as well as people with whom they have been in close contact.