Former Heisman Trophy winner and NFL great Herschel Walker is excited for the return of Big Ten college football, and says fans have the president to thank for persuading the league to return.
On Tuesday, the Council of Presidents and Chancellors voted unanimously to begin the football season Oct. 23 despite the COVID-19 pandemic. Although Walker played in the Southeastern Conference, the former Georgia Bulldog posted a video to Twitter sharing his thoughts.
“Big Ten football is back,” Walker said. “I think that’s wonderful. So, I want to say good luck to all of the players. Your voices got heard. The president became the voice for the voiceless. He made a lot of calls. So, I want to thank President Trump.
“Also, I want to invite all of my professional brothers and sisters out there,” he continued. “God, let us join hands, let us go to Washington, let this president speak for us, and let’s change the world and stop this violence.”
The Return of Big Ten Football
The emergence of daily quick-response COVID-19 testing made a re-vote on the league opening possible. Previously, the testing was not available when university presidents and chancellors chose to hold off on the season.
“Our focus with the Task Force over the last six weeks was to ensure the health and safety of our student-athletes,” Big Ten Commissioner Kevin Warren said Wednesday morning.
“Our goal has always been to return to competition so all student-athletes can realize their dream of competing in the sports they love. We are incredibly grateful for the collaborative work that our Return to Competition Task Force have accomplished to ensure the health, safety and wellness of student-athletes, coaches and administrators.”
Recently, the Pac-12 began a partnership with a diagnostic lab that gives its schools the ability to test athletes daily. The Big Ten thinks they can be successful if they implement a similar policy.
The conference is taking on strict medical protocols. They will include daily antigen testing, enhanced cardiac screening for students who may test positive, and constant data monitoring. These factors combined will decide how schools can proceed with practices and games.
The return comes off the back of pressure from coaches, a lawsuit from players, and pressure from parents. Additionally, even President Trump pushed for a Big Ten football season. The conference is home to multiple battleground states in the November election.
The Big Ten stated that it will make an announcement “shortly” in regards to other fall and winter sports.
[H/T FOX News]