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Tuesday, August 16, 2022

SEC play shut down entirely

<p>Mike Lemcke, from Richmond, Va., sits in an empty Greensboro Coliseum after the NCAA college basketball games were cancelled at the Atlantic Coast Conference tournament in Greensboro, N.C., Thursday, March 12, 2020. The biggest conferences in college sports all canceled their basketball tournaments because of the new coronavirus, seemingly putting the NCAA Tournament in doubt. (AP Photo/Ben McKeown)</p>

Mike Lemcke, from Richmond, Va., sits in an empty Greensboro Coliseum after the NCAA college basketball games were cancelled at the Atlantic Coast Conference tournament in Greensboro, N.C., Thursday, March 12, 2020. The biggest conferences in college sports all canceled their basketball tournaments because of the new coronavirus, seemingly putting the NCAA Tournament in doubt. (AP Photo/Ben McKeown)

There will be no SEC sports played until the fall, at the very least.

The SEC  announced it was canceling all regular season conference and non-conference competitions for the remainder of the 2019-20 athletic year, including SEC championship events, due to “developments related to the coronavirus.”

"This is a difficult day for all of us, and I am especially disappointed for our student-athletes," SEC commissioner Greg Sankey said in a statement. "The health and well-being of our entire conference community is an ongoing priority for the SEC as we continue to monitor developments and information about the COVID-19 virus."

The ACC was the first Power 5 conference to announce outright cancellation of events for the remainder of the academic year, doing so three hours before the SEC.

Cancellation of remaining athletic events extends to spring games. Florida athletic director Scott Stricklin said at a press conference on Friday, “Obviously, we’re not going to go through normal spring ball as we had scheduled and we’re probably not going to have a spring game on April 18.”

That decision has now been made for him and the Gators. Team and individual practices, and meetings are still suspended through April 15.

There will also be no pro days held for prospective NFL players at SEC schools.

Tuesday morning, UF President Kent Fuchs sent an email to all students and faculty saying, “Students who have not gone home yet must do so if possible.”

Stricklin encouraged student-athletes to return home in his statement on Friday, which was consistent with what administration was advising students to do at the time.

The impact of completely canceled play at Florida alone is immense. When play was originally canceled through March 30, there were 42 events impacted. Cancellations through June at just one of the 14 member institutions in the SEC will impact hundreds of planned events across several sports.

Follow Kyle Wood on Twitter @Kkylewood. Contact him at kwood@alligator.org.

Mike Lemcke, from Richmond, Va., sits in an empty Greensboro Coliseum after the NCAA college basketball games were cancelled at the Atlantic Coast Conference tournament in Greensboro, N.C., Thursday, March 12, 2020. The biggest conferences in college sports all canceled their basketball tournaments because of the new coronavirus, seemingly putting the NCAA Tournament in doubt. (AP Photo/Ben McKeown)

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