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Big Ten says schools will decide on COVID-19 protocols

Last season, the Big Ten at first called off its fall football season because of the pandemic before reversing course and deciding instead to start in late October.

Big Ten Commissioner Kevin Warren said the conference will take a “decentralized” approach to COVID-19 protocols by allowing each school to put in place its own plan.

“Our schools are finalizing their proposed policies and procedures for the fall,” Warren said at Big Ten football media days at Lucas Oil Stadium. “We’ll get that information in early August, we’ll combine it, and then we’ll get together with our chancellors and presidents and other key constituents to make the determination as far as how we handle the fall."

Warren also said there has been no determination on whether games would be forfeited — as has been suggested by the Southeastern Conference and Big 12 —- if teams cannot play because of COVID-19 issues.

Last season, the Big Ten at first called off its fall football season because of the pandemic before reversing course and deciding instead to start in late October.

The late start left no room for games to be made up and numerous Big Ten games were canceled because of COVID-19 left teams short players.

Warren said the conference plans to hire a chief medical officer before football season starts.