Just days after canceling all conference play and conference championships, the Sun Belt Conference on Monday put an end to all athletic activities, including practices, as a preemptive safety measure to protect student athletes against the ongoing spread of coronavirus.
For Georgia Southern and the other 11 Sun Belt institutions, it marked the final blow in what was already a decimated spring sports schedule.
Up until Monday, all sports were still free to hold formal training sessions and there may have been a possibility of some sort of competition — even if it was building to nothing with conference and NCAA tournaments already canceled..
Most notable on Georgia Southern's campus was spring football camp, which held a scrimmage last Thursday and hosted what proved to be the final Pro Day in the country on Friday as the National Football League suspended team travel to any school sites later that day.
The plan had been to proceed with spring workouts as practices had been left up to the discretion of each school, but as has been the case across all sports, small steps quickly led to bigger steps. Removal of fans quickly led to event cancellation and has now taken out all team activities across the board.
"Disappointed for our players, staff, & fans w/ our spring activities being canceled," GS football coach Chad Lunsford said in a Monday evening tweet. "However, we are MORE DISAPPOINTED the In-Season Sports that have been canceled. Hard work is put in way before the opportunities to compete."
The Georgia Southern athletic department will continue to provide updates as both it and the Sun Belt Conference continue to evaluate any additional needed responses to the virus outbreak.