SELINSGROVE – There won’t be any fall sports at Susquehanna University, or any of the Landmark Conference schools... so far.
Following a unanimous vote of the Landmark Conference Executive Board, the league has postponed all conference regular-season contests and championships scheduled to take place during the fall semester. The move is effective through Dec. 31.
Additionally, the league noted the conference supports institutional autonomy for its member institutions and teams to engage in athletically related activities in accordance with their local and state health guidelines and NCAA Division III rules. The sports impacted by this decision are men’s basketball, women’s basketball, men’s cross country, women’s cross country, field hockey, men’s indoor track and field, women’s indoor track and field, men’s soccer, women’s soccer, men’s swimming and diving, women’s swimming and diving, and volleyball.
On July 7, the Centennial Conference suspended all fall semester competition and championships, a decision which impacted the River Hawk football team.
“During these challenging times, the health and safety of our student-athletes and campus community is our foremost concern. The wave of fall sports cancellations among D3 conferences, schools and universities suggests our opponents and partners have adopted the same awareness in regards to the COVID19 pandemic,” stated Director of Athletics Sharief Hashim.
The conference and its member institutions are exploring ways to provide competitive opportunities for fall student-athletes to participate in their sport during the spring semester, barring local and state recommendations related to the pandemic. At present, it is the intent of the Landmark Conference to play a conference schedule and conduct league championships for fall sports in the spring 2021.
“My introduction to the Susquehanna campus community has provided a perspective that excites me greatly. Many staff and faculty have shared insight and examples of SU student-athletes exhibiting great resilience, intelligence and togetherness both on the playing surface and in the classroom. As coaches and administrators, our belief is that the same qualities that push our athletic programs to achieve great success will help all of us maintain consistent excellence as we navigate the fall semester and 2020-21 academic year,” said Hashim. “As you return to campus, understand that efficient social distancing practices, including wearing masks consistently, will help us all remain healthy and safe. As student-athletes, you are leaders and role models within our campus community. Your willingness to exude professionalism and the SU spirit will help us deal with any adverse situations this academic year.”
The Landmark will provide a status report by Oct. 15 that will include any updates to the league’s winter and spring championships, along with additional information regarding future schedules, it was noted.