Report: Oklahoma's Lincoln Riley open to moving CFB season to spring
Oklahoma head coach Lincoln Riley is not opposed to moving the college football season to the spring if that becomes necessary, according to a recent report.
Pete Thamel of Yahoo Sports reported on Wednesday that Riley is open to the idea of playing football in the spring, if it’s what has to happen. The head coach of the Sooners believes it could be a plausible solution, given the current circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“If we do decide that the spring is the best option, if we get to that point, we shouldn’t be scared of it,” Riley told Yahoo Sports. “It’s very doable.”
Oklahoma coach Lincoln Riley tells @YahooSports he’s open to playing in the spring. “If we do decide that the spring is the best option, if we get to that point, we shouldn’t be scared of it. It’s very doable.” https://t.co/GgPLamO8cI
— Pete Thamel (@PeteThamel) July 1, 2020
Moving the college football season to the spring has been under consideration since March, when the first major outbreaks of coronavirus were occurring throughout the country. However, due to the NFL Scouting Combine and Draft, along with the idea of playing around 24 to 30 games in under 12 months, the idea did not gain much traction.
However, as there continues to be a surging number of cases in the different regions of the country, a shift in the schedule could be necessary. On ESPN’s Golic and Wingo, Paul Finebaum said that it’s very unlikely that a season begins on time.
“Not to sound like a lot of people, but if you go back to Memorial Day, I felt great,” Finebaum said. “Not anymore.”
“I think the only people selling delusion and hope right now are folks who run college football. They’re talking about on-time beginnings and full stadiums and they’re all full of crap. It’s time to start speaking realistically.”
Riley has been an advocate for doing things the right way. When he heard of the SEC’s plan to begin allowing student-athletes back on campus in June, he called it one of the most ridiculous things he had heard.
“In my opinion, we need to bring them in as late as we possibly can before we play a season,” Riley said. “Every day early that we bring them in is a day we could have gotten better. It’s a day we could’ve learned more about the virus. It’s a day PPE maybe gets better. It’s a day closer to a vaccine. It’s a day that our testing equipment and testing capabilities get better, and it’s just not worth it. So, we’ve gotta be patient. We get one shot at this, and we’ve gotta do it right.”
No final decisions about the 2020 season have been made at this time.