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Shocker in the news

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Yes, we have real news this weekend

NCAA Basketball: Wichita State at Memphis Justin Ford-USA TODAY Sports

After several weeks, Kansas State is finally in the news for actual sports reasons: the Wildcats will play a 4-game regular season series against Wichita State. The teams will first take the court in a tentatively scheduled October 24 exhibition match in Wichita, a charity contest to benefit organizations participating in COVID19 relief. The regular season series will begin in December 2021 when the two teams face off in Wichita (with the Shockers as the home team), followed by Kansas State’s home tilt at Bramlage in 2022, a game at the T-Mobile Center in Kansas City in 2023 (with the Wildcats as the home team), and a final game at the Koch Arena in 2024 to wrap up the series.

Think about the possibilities: both schools can now team up and call out Kansas for its wimpiness.

COVID19 continues to dominate the national conversation, and college campuses are right in the eye of the storm.

— Several universities have already declared that classes in Fall 2020 will be online only, including at least two Power 5 colleges: Rutgers and USC.

— Possibly in anticipation of these decisions, United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) indicated that all international students enrolled at colleges that go to 100% online instruction will have to return to their home countries or risk deportation. Considering that foreign students contribute upwards of $50 billion in revenue, this decision did not go down well. Predictably. a number of colleges (both private and public) have banded together to file suit against the federal government.

— Earlier this week, in news that does not bode well for college sports in the fall, both North Carolina and Ohio State suspended voluntary workouts following several positive tests for coronavirus at both schools (37 for the Tar Heels, an unannounced number for the Buckeyes).

— Yesterday, in a move that surprised his peers in the Power 5, Big Ten commissioner Kevin Warren announced the conference will limit its football season to just conference games. This could have a domino effect on the other conferences, especially as the Pac-12 was already considering cancelling its non-conference slate, and the ACC (+ Notre Dame) is contemplating a conference-only schedule as well.

College football is quickly running out of options, and the sport’s failure to mount a concerted effort even in the face of a global pandemic is particularly damning.

I hope your weekend is more fun than college sports right now.