It's hard to imagine football being played at "The Big House" without fans in attendance. But Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer alluded to that becoming a realistic scenario in a recent interview. Whitmer has since clarified her comments on the matter.
Football games without fans this fall has been a major discussion point in the midst of the COVID-19 outbreak. The NFL seems best suited to find a way to play the 2020 season given the league's freedom. The NCAA is in a trickier position, though.
Whitmer already declared her state won't be "filling stadiums in the fall." This would obviously impact major universities like Michigan and Michigan State - two schools which have massive stadiums and fan-bases to fill them.
But Whitmer has since clarified her comment after it created a bit of a stir among Michigan natives. The Michigan Gov. affirmed "sports is not over," but fan attendance will still likely be impacted until the pandemic calms down.
“We’re going to be in a new normal for quite a while, and it doesn’t mean that sports is over," Whitmer said, via Detroit Free Press. "Sports is not over. . . . We can have sports, just the way we observe them might look different for a while."
It's now been over two months since a major live sporting event took place, outside of the UFC.
At this point, sports fans would gladly accept fan-less sports contests if it meant leagues could resume play.
For now, there's a strong chance iconic venues like "The Big House" and Spartan Stadium will be empty in the fall, other than players and staff.