The Missouri Valley Conference and Missouri Valley Football Conference have announced the postponement of all fall sports competition and championships. The league will continue to evaluate options for conducting MVC competition in these sports and potentially participating in NCAA championships during the spring of 2021.
The decision was made based on continuing uncertainty around the ability to play full-season league schedules safely amid the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as the lack of a fall NCAA championship opportunity after the number of competing programs fell below the 50 percent threshold put forth by the NCAA.
The decision impacts Redbird sports that compete in their championship seasons in the fall (men’s and women’s cross country, football, women’s soccer and volleyball). The MVC did announce that non-conference competition in Fall 2020 can be conducted at institutional discretion, however Illinois State programs will not be playing in any contests this fall including those not in their championship seasons (men’s and women’s golf, men’s and women’s tennis, swimming, baseball and softball).
Plans for MVC-sponsored winter (men’s and women’s basketball, men’s and women’s indoor track & field; swimming and diving) and spring sports (baseball, softball, women’s tennis; men’s and women’s golf; and men’s and women’s outdoor track & field) are not impacted at this time.
During the fall months, Redbird student-athletes in all sports will be allowed to participate in athletically-related activities (practices, strength and conditioning sessions, team meetings) consistent with institutional policies, public health guidelines and NCAA and Conference regulations.
The MVC COVID-19 Working Group consisting of athletics administrators, faculty athletics representatives, sports medicine personnel and student-athletes will continue to monitor the national and local landscapes and work diligently to develop protocols for a safe return to MVC regular-season and championship competition by the Conference’s student-athletes.
More information will be made available on Monday, August 17 for season ticket holders regarding options for the games moved to the spring.