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Missouri Valley Conference delays start of fall season; football unchanged for now

(WEEK) -- The Missouri Valley Conference is postponing the start of its fall sports season until September 18, but the football season is not included in the decision.

The Missouri Valley Conference Presidents Council also decided the league will conduct conference-only competition in men's and women's soccer, and volleyball, according to the MVC website.

Both Bradley University and Illinois State University are member schools of the MVC.

The ISU football team is scheduled to start its season September 12 at home against Eastern Illinois University.

"The start of the Redbird football season was not immediately affected, as the Missouri Valley Football Conference Presidents Council did not announce any decision to modify the 2020 Fall season. The council sees merit in delaying the decision, if there remains a possibility to provide a safe competitive opportunity for MVFC student-athletes," a statement by Illinois State University athletics read.

The decision by the council does not affect football-playing schools that compete in leagues with separate governing bodies, such as the Missouri Valley Football Conference and the Pioneer Football League.

Fall competitive schedules for men’s and women’s cross country, men’s and women’s golf, and women’s tennis will also be delayed until Sept. 18, as will the non-championship fall seasons for baseball and softball, the conference statement read.

Practice for all MBC sport will not be able to start before August 17.

MVC schools will be able to play against non-conference schools as long as the other institutions meet the necessary safety guidelines outlined by the NCAA.

Schedules for winter and spring sports are not impacted, according to the MVC.

"The MVC and its Presidents Council will continue to monitor national developments and, if necessary, will consider additional action as dictated by circumstances," according to the statement.

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