Last season, conferences worked hard to ensure cancelled games – due to the pandemic – would be rescheduled for a later date. SEC football won’t follow the same strategy this upcoming season.
SEC commissioner Greg Sankey revealed surprising news on Monday. He announced the conference will not reschedule games if a team has to cancel because of COVID. Instead, the teams forced to cancel will have to forfeit the game.
As of Monday, just six of the 14 SEC football teams have reached the 80-percent vaccination threshold. Teams may be further incentivized to get the shot(s), knowing forfeited games are now on the table.
“SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey announces games will not be rescheduled this fall due to COVID,” wrote Brody Miller of The Athletic, via Twitter. “It is up to teams to get vaccinated. If they don’t have enough, they may have to forfeit. Six of 14 SEC teams have reached the 80% vaccination threshold, he said.”
SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey announces games will not be rescheduled this fall due to COVID. It is up to teams to get vaccinated. If they don't have enough, they may have to forfeit.
Six of 14 SEC teams have reached the 80% vaccination threshold, he said.
— Brody Miller (@BrodyAMiller) July 19, 2021
Greg Sankey also added his support of vaccinations, saying they are “important” and an “incredible product of science.”
The SEC commissioner is clearly trying to encourage teams and players within his conference to get vaccinated before the upcoming fall sports season.
SEC commissioner Greg Sankey: "Vaccines are an important and incredible product of science. Not a political football. And we need to do our part to support a healthy society."
— Stewart Mandel (@slmandel) July 19, 2021
So how will this impact SEC football standings this upcoming season? It could have a drastic impact.
Imagine if a 9-0 Alabama team faces COVID-related complications late in the season and has to cancel. Well, according to Sankey, that would count as a loss.
A loss due to forfeit could become the standard throughout college football this upcoming season.