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Ohio State Makes Decision On Scholarships For Returning Seniors

Ohio State football athletic director Gene Smith at a press conference about college football coach Urban Meyer.

COLUMBUS, OH - DECEMBER 04: Ohio State University athletics director Gene Smith listens during a press conference at Ohio State University on December 4, 2018 in Columbus, Ohio. At the press conference head coach Urban Meyer announced his retirement and offensive coordinator Ryan Day was announced as the next head coach. Meyer will continue to coach until after the Ohio State Buckeyes play in the Rose Bowl. (Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images)

On Monday, the NCAA's decision on athletes whose seasons were impacted by COVID-19. Winter sports, like basketball were just getting underway with their postseasons, while spring sports were just about a month into play when the seasons were canceled. Today, we learned how Ohio State will deal with the situation.

Unfortunately for winter sport seniors, they will not get a shot to return to school. As most expected, the NCAA did not rule to grant them an extra year of eligibility. It would've been great for players who missed a chance to play in the NCAA Tournament, but would have also made for a really tough scholarship situation in many of those sports.

Spring athletes got better news. Because their seasons were cut short very early, schools are being allowed to bring back seniors for another year. That decision is up to the schools for their teams individually, but one major powerhouse athletic department has already confirmed that it will be doing so.

Ohio State says it will provide aid for seniors looking to play in 2021. Per the NCAA's ruling, the returning seniors will not count against scholarship limits, so it doesn't jeopardize incoming freshmen's spots on the team. It may impact playing time, and make for some interesting unanticipated situations in other ways like that, but overall this seems like a pretty fair decision.

Ohio State's spring coaches are very pleased with how athletic director Gene Smith has dealt with this tough situation.

Ohio State sports impacted here include baseball, men's and women's golf, men's and women's lacrosse, rowing, softball, men's and women's tennis, men's and women's track and field, and men's volleyball.


Ohio State athletic department spokesman said that OSU will provide scholarship aid to seniors who'll return for another year next year because of the NCAA's ruling yesterday. That was left to discretion of each school by NCAA.

— Bill Rabinowitz (@brdispatch) March 31, 2020

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