Iowa AD Gary Barta says it will be 'gut-wrenching to watch' if other conferences play football
Iowa athletic directory Gary Barta was pretty straightforward while speaking with media on Monday. If other conferences successfully play football this season, he says it will be devastating.
Barta met with reporters on Monday, a few days after the school announced it was cutting four sports programs — men’s and women’s swimming and diving, men’s gymnastics and men’s tennis — because of financial losses due to the pandemic. The presser also came a few days after B1G commissioner Kevin Warren confirmed the conference’s decision to not play football this fall.
According to Scott Dochterman of The Athletic, Barta said it “would be gut-wrenching” to see other teams on the field this year, knowing the Hawkeyes won’t be playing football. He says it would hurt everyone from the players and coaches to the fans.
Barta was one who was in favor of delaying the start of the season to early October, hoping to create a solution for the league’s concerns. However, the presidents and commissioner came to a conclusion to postpone until at least spring.
“It seemed to me we had a plan [to push the season back],” Barta said, per Dochterman. Now, the goal is to figure out a way to get a spring model implemented to allow student-athletes the opportunity to play.
The goal of the spring schedule is to start in January, or possibly February, with neutral-site locations. The earlier the season starts, the less likely it is that it would impact a 12-game regular season in 2021.
It will be interesting to see how quickly the B1G develops a plan.