While Ohio State and the Big Ten may have stopped exploring fall options for a football season, the players and their parents are not giving up hope.
The Big Ten canceled the fall sports season Tuesday despite outcries for the season to be played. Now five days since the cancelation, a letter from the Football Parents Association at Ohio State and a petition created by junior quarterback Justin Fields stand against the Big Ten’s decision and for a reinstatement of the season.
A MoveOn petition addressed to Big Ten commissioner Kevin Warren, the Big Ten university presidents and athletic directors was created by Fields Sunday, and it called for the decision on the 2020 football season to be reversed.
“We believe that we should have the right to make decisions about what is best for our health and our future,” the petition said. “Don’t let our hard work and sacrifice be in vain.”
At the time of this publication, the petition had over 53,000 signatures.
The petition was not the only movement toward having a fall season though.
On Saturday, the FPAOS wrote a letter to Warren that shared the sentiments of the petition. Along with the reinstatement of the season, the letter asked for transparency and a detailed alternative plan in case the decision to postpone the season was reached again.
“Football is a game of risk,” the FPAOS letter said. “Our sons work extremely hard for the opportunity to play and fully understand the risks involved when they step on the field.”
The letter, which has been followed by letters from parents of Iowa and Penn State players, called for a response from the commissioner by Wednesday.
Ohio State athletic director Gene Smith said that his focus was on creating a plan for the spring season.
“We are 100 percent focused on supporting the health and safety and academic success of our student-athletes, and on working with the Big Ten to develop a spring plan for our sports as expeditiously as possible,” Smith said in a Wednesday statement.