August is upon us and normally all the college soccer teams across San Antonio and the nation start practicing and gearing up for the fall soccer season. With the Pandemic entering its fifth month in the United States, the NCCA, the NAIA, conferences and individual schools had to make tough decisions on the upcoming 2020 season. Early on in the pandemic some schools considered cutting some college sports programs to save money lost from not having having students. University of Cincinnati cut it’s men college soccer program on April 14th.
Much was left to uncertainty as the fall college soccer season loomed. The NCAA and NAIA left it to the various conferences around the country to decide on how to best handle the situation. The pandemic has been a complex matter, every part of the country is being effected differently. The concerns and safety of students returning to on campus learning has been paramount. It wasn’t certain that some universities and colleges would even have students on campus for the fall semester, making it near impossible for most student athletes to train or even have a season.
NAIA: Red River Athletic Conference –
Both the men’s and women’s Our Lady of the Lake University soccer teams were set to build upon last season’s success and Texas A&M San Antonio was looking forward to their inaugural season in the NAIA. The Red River Athletic Conference announced on July 16th that all fall sports would move to January 2021 at least. “RRAC administrators and athletic directors will begin work on adjusting soccer and volleyball schedules to account for the changes. New RRAC tournament dates for those sports will be determined later.” The RRAC said in a press release.
Full RRAC press release: http://www.redriverconference.com/article/2494.php
Division III: Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference –
Trinity University’s men’s and women’s teams are San Antonio’s lone representatives in NCAA Division III and the SCAC. On the same day the Red River Athletic Conference made it’s announcement the SCAC also released it announcement of the suspension of the fall sports season. “However, with recent spikes in cases, especially within our footprint, the decision to suspend competition for fall sports during the Fall semester and allow our campuses to focus on the health and safety of all students within a structured environment became the logical outcome.” – SCAC Commissioner Dwayne Hanberry.
Full SCAC press release: https://www.scacsports.com/news/covid19_update3
Division II: Lone Star Conference –
St. Mary’s men’s and women’s soccer play in the NCAA Div II’s Lone Star Conference. St. Mary’s men’s team is coming off a Sweet 16 appearance in the NCAA Div II tournament and had several international signings. For the Lone Star Conference, not all fall sports were cancelled or postponed to the spring. Golf, tennis and cross country will be played. “Football, soccer, volleyball and basketball, which are classified as high contact risk sports by the NCAA resocialization principles, can practice during the fall under all applicable NCAA Division II rules, but not compete until the spring.” said the LSC in a statement released on Aug 7th.
Division I: Western Athletic Conference, Southland Conference and Conference USA
Three conferences are represented in San Antonio by two schools in NCAA Division I. The University of Incarnate Word’s men’s team plays in the WAC, the UIW’s women’s team plays in the Southland Conference and UTSA women’s team plays in Conference USA.
The Western Athletic Conference announced it would delay the start of the fall season for it’s sports. UIW men’s soccer is looking to get the season with the WAC starting the men’s soccer season on September 10th. “In consideration of the global COVID-19 pandemic, the Western Athletic Conference Board of Directors today postponed the start of the fall season competition to no earlier than September 10 for women’s soccer and September 16 for volleyball and men’s soccer.” – WAC
For UIW women’s soccer, the Southland Conference made a statement on Aug 5th for the fall season. No date has been set for the Southland but are optimistic to start the fall season. “The Southland membership is eager to return their athletic teams to the fields and courts in the coming weeks and months. Our campus presidential leaders, in consultation with their athletic directors, agreed to continue these vital conversations in the future within the parameters set forth in the NCAA Resocialization of Collegiate Sport document and the recently received guidance from the NCAA Board of Governors.”
Southland Conference press release: https://www.southland.org/news/2020/8/5/general-southland-conference-statement.aspx
UTSA women’s soccer team started practice this week and are looking to start the season. Conference USA today released a statement on college football but has yet to announce an update on it’s other fall sports.