Penn State Commonwealth Campuses Beaver, Brandywine, DuBois, Fayette, Hazleton, Greater Allegheny, Lehigh Valley, Mont Alto, New Kensington, Scranton, Schuylkill, Shenango, Wilkes-Barre, York will provide conference competition in the sports of baseball, cross country, golf, and softball.
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – The PSUAC is moving forward with intercollegiate athletics competition for spring sports, which include baseball and softball based on the recommendation of the PSUAC Executive Committee. The decision also provides opportunities for cross country and golf, two low-transmission risk sports that had been tabled in the December decision to cancel other fall and winter sports.
The Conference Office has continuously monitored University, state, local, and national governing body guidelines, as well as national trends in intercollegiate athletics throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. The health and safety of student-athletes, coaches and campus communities has continued to be the most important aspect of the PSUAC's attempts to re-socialize intercollegiate sports at the Commonwealth Campuses.
In order to accomplish these goals, campuses that participate will be required to meet more stringent health and safety protocols established by the University, including enhanced testing capacity and cleaning procedures to reduce risks of transmission. Individual teams will also be required to pause activities should program positivity rates reach levels set in the University's Return to Operations for CWC Intercollegiate Athletics guidelines.
"This has been a trying year, but the opportunity has presented itself to offer a season for our spring sports," said Director of Commonwealth Campus Athletics Maureen Cooper. "It is exciting to be able to offer a season in our spring sports, and we look forward to returning to the fields for competition for approximately 600 student-athletes within the PSUAC."
Campuses will be limited to conference competition only in PSUAC championship sports (baseball, cross country, golf, softball). The other low-transmission risk spring sports of tennis and track & field, which are offered by a small number of member campuses, may proceed with competition outside the PSUAC if they and their opponents can meet certain testing requirements and confirm established health and safety protocols. Limited spectator capacity will be allowed at outdoor events, with a requirement to follow Pennsylvania Department of Health and CDC guidelines, including expectations of universal masking and social distancing.
"I applaud all of the people who have worked hard to get us to this point," said PSUAC Commissioner Ryan Ehrie. "We have spent so much time trying to get here, and our Chancellors agreed that it was important to be able to offer these opportunities to our student athletes. I'm grateful and really look forward to seeing our student-athletes back on the field."
The Conference Office will continue to monitor trends related to the pandemic, as well as Pennsylvania DOH and CDC guidelines so that PSUAC members have the most up-to-date measures in place to promote the health and safety of our student-athletes, coaches, and staff.