BIRMINGHAM, Alabama (July 14, 2020) – The Southeastern Conference announced Tuesday that it will postpone the start of volleyball, soccer and cross country competition through at least August 31. The decision will provide additional time to prepare for the safe return of competition on an adjusted timeline.
The delay in competition includes all exhibition and non-conference games.
SEC institutions will continue to follow the guidance of the Conference’s Return to Activity and Medical Advisory Task Force and the NCAA’s Resocialization of College Sports Guidelines as student-athletes are engaged in preseason preparation for a return to competition.
Any rescheduling of non-conference contests impacted by the postponed start of the fall seasons in volleyball, soccer and cross country will be determined by each school.
The SEC continues to monitor developments related to COVID-19 as it evaluates the potential impact on fall schedules in all sports, with the understanding that the primary responsibility of the SEC and its institutions is to ensure the health and well-being of its student-athletes.
Below are statements from the University of Arkansas on the SEC’s decision to postpone the starts of the 2020 fall seasons for those sports.
Statements on the postponement of SEC soccer and volleyball seasons from soccer head coach Colby Hale and volleyball head coach Jason Watson are below.
For Arkansas, six soccer matches – including two preseason scrimmages – and three volleyball matches will be affected by the postponement. The Razorbacks’ cross country teams are scheduled to open their seasons on Sept. 4 on their home course at the Arkansas Preview.
Colby Hale, Soccer Head Coach
“Throughout this process the top priority for all of us has been the health and well-being of our student-athletes, fans and staff. We all appreciate the hard work and leadership from Commissioner Sankey, Hunter and others during a very difficult time so we will continue to listen to the guidelines and information they provide. When the time comes, we’ll have a plan and be ready to go.”
Jason Watson, Volleyball Head Coach
“Together, our Athletic Department and the SEC, have made the safety of our student-athletes their overriding priority. The decision today to delay the start of our season is reflective of that shared priority. As a program, we’re committed to playing volleyball this Fall. That’s our goal. We are thankful for the countless hours people on our campus and at the SEC have spent, and continue to spend, on making our goal possible.”