Majority of Cal Poly fall sports suspended

The majority of Cal Poly’s fall sports competition will not take place because of coronavirus concerns, following a decision Wednesday by the Big West Conference Board of Directors to postpone the upcoming season of athletic events for the remainder of 2020.

As a result of the Big West Conference decision, Cal Poly men’s and women’s soccer; men’s and women’s tennis; men’s and women’s golf; men’s and women’s cross country; and women’s volleyball have all been postponed. Likewise, off-season games for baseball and softball have been postponed. 

Games, meets and matches previously scheduled to take place in the fall could potentially be moved to the spring season of 2021. The Big West Conference will determine at a later date whether to do so.

At the moment, most Cal Poly football and basketball games are still scheduled to take place this year. 

Cal Poly competes in the Big Sky Conference in football, so its program is unaffected by the Big West decision. The Mustangs football team is scheduled to begin play on Sept. 5 against ULM in Monroe, Louisiana. But, Cal Poly’s games the following two weeks, at UC Berkeley and at home against the University of San Diego, have both been canceled.

Men’s and women’s basketball are scheduled to begin play on Nov. 10. Both programs compete in the Big West, but basketball is considered a winter sport, so it is thus far unimpacted by the postponement of fall schedules.

Additionally, the Big West decision does not impact the fall sports of wrestling and men’s and women’s swimming and diving, each of which compete in other conferences.

“Although our student-athletes and our staff are disappointed, we all could see this coming weeks ago,” Cal Poly Athletic Director Don Oberhelman said in a statement following the Big West decision to suspend fall sports. “We know this to be the right decision, and I think our hearts were prepared for this to happen. Now we look forward to the next steps of preparing for the spring.”

Each Big West university has discretion over if and when its student-athletes return to campus. On-campus athletic activity must comply with NCAA regulations, university policies and public health guidelines.