NORFOLK, Va. - All fall sports have been canceled at Old Dominion University due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“We concluded that the season – including travel and competition – posed too great a risk for our student-athletes,” President Broderick said.
“I know many on and off campus will be disappointed, but we must prioritize the health and safety of our student-athletes, as well as our coaches, staff and fans.”
The decision was made between Athletic Director Wood Selig, coaches, medical and public health experts and state and local officials, he said.
Selig said he hopes fall sports can be played in the spring, “but first and foremost it has to be safe for everyone involved and would also require NCAA approval.”
ODU is the 14th Football Bowl Subdivision school to announce it won’t play, following the University of Connecticut and the 12-team Mid-American Conference.
Field hockey, men’s and women’s soccer and volleyball also won’t compete this fall. The volleyball team would have launched its inaugural season at ODU. Additionally, spring sports that play a modified fall season will also not play.
President Broderick said Old Dominion’s decision was made to protect not only student-athletes, but also the staff and the greater Hampton Roads community.
First-year football coach Ricky Rahne said the safety of his players is paramount.
“As we continue to navigate these uncertain times, our staff will continue to find creative and safe ways to develop our players,” he said. “The health and safety of our players will remain a priority for our football program and our University.”
ODU football season ticket holders will be contacted this week and asked to select one of three options: credit their ticket and seat membership payment to date toward the 2021 season, transfer their payment to date into a tax-deductible contribution to the Old Dominion Athletic Foundation or receive a refund.
Selig is encouraging ODU fans to turn their payments into donations, if they can afford to.
All fans who purchased season tickets for the inaugural season in S.B. Ballard Stadium in 2019 can reclaim their seats and location in 2021 regardless of whether they purchased tickets for the 2020 season.