NWC Postpones High-Contact Fall Sports

The Northwest Conference President’s Council has announced its difficult decision to postpone competition in football, men’s and women’s soccer, women’s rowing, and women’s volleyball for Fall 2020, due to concerns around the health and safety of players, staff and fans amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The NWC is working to develop a schedule for competition for these sports in the spring.

Men’s and women’s cross country, men’s and women’s golf, and men’s and women’s tennis will be permitted to play this fall, and practice and other athletics-related activities for all sports are permitted in accordance with NCAA Division III rules, as well as institutional, state and local health directives.

The NWC and its member institutions will continue to monitor changing federal, state and local health directives and consult with the NWC health advisory group, the NCAA and public health officials in looking ahead to the winter sports season.

“We are committed to supporting our student-athletes and their experience through these challenging times,” said Pacific University Athletic Director Keith Buckley. “Our coaches and staff continue to work diligently in developing a plan to provide our student-athletes a safe and valuable experience both this fall, as well as into the winter/spring competition schedules.”

Pacific University is working to plan for the safe reopening of its campuses this fall, while prioritizing the health and wellbeing of students, faculty, staff and campus communities. 

Reopening plans include physical distancing in classrooms and common spaces, requirements for face masks and self-monitoring, and enhanced cleaning and disinfecting. Many academic programs, including the undergraduate programs on the Forest Grove Campus, will be delivered in a hybrid model combining in-person and online courses and prioritizing flexibility. Residence halls will reopen with precautions to protect students’ health and safety. And a number of response teams are working to ensure students have expanded access to health, counseling and other support systems as they study on campus or remotely.

In addition to the adjustments to the Division III sports schedule, Pacific also is canceling its pre-orientation outdoors program, Voyages, this fall, and redirecting efforts to engage students in safe activities on campus. The university also has opted to cancel in-person Homecoming events scheduled for Oct. 9-11, providing virtual activities for alumni, students, families and friends.

“These are extremely difficult decisions in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. We believe in the importance of a rich, comprehensive college experience for our students,” said Pacific University President Lesley Hallick. “We are all adjusting, together, to the pandemic conditions our world is facing, and Pacific is absolutely committed to finding innovative and creative ways to advance our students’ educational experiences in these challenging times.”

Wednesday, July 22, 2020