Update on Fall and Winter Sports

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Since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic several months ago, the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) member institutions have prioritized the health and safety of their communities in plans for reopening their campuses.

In accordance with public health guidance and safety standards, as well as NCAA Resocialization recommendations, the SCIAC Presidents have unanimously agreed to cancel conference competition, including championships, for all fall and winter sports during the 2020-21 academic year. The following sports are included in this recent decision: men’s and women’s soccer, men’s water polo, football, women’s volleyball, men’s and women’s cross country, men’s and women’s swimming & diving, and men’s and women’s basketball. Institutions have the autonomy to decide whether they wish to permit conditioning, practicing, and other forms of competition as it relates to fall and winter sports during this spring semester.

The SCIAC and its members remain committed to exploring meaningful competitive conference experiences for spring sport student-athletes later in the spring semester. As the pandemic evolves, the SCIAC will continue to monitor changing federal, state, and local guidance, and will continue to consult with each other as well as public health authorities. The health and well-being of all constituents involved has been, and will continue to be, the driving force behind our individual and collective decisions during this challenging time.

Press release provided by the SCIAC


Q: What does this mean for the eligibility of a student-athlete from a fall or winter sport?

A: The NCAA Division III has already passed legislation that protects the eligibility of all student-athletes. Fall and winter student-athletes will not be charged with a year of eligibility. The eligibility restriction of four years and 10-semesters will be extended to five years and 12 semesters.

Q: Will there be any athletic activity this spring for fall and winter sports?

A: Orange County is still in the more restrictive Purple tier on the state of California’s four-tiered system. As the pandemic evolves over the next several months, Chapman University and Chapman Athletics will continue to work with local health officials to determine a safe return to campus and athletic activity. Nearly 65 percent of student-athletes returned to campus in October when the university reopened for in-person instruction and participated in conditioning as well as small group practices. If Chapman University is able to open campus again, Chapman Athletics will have similar opportunities for all student-athletes to begin practices. Until that time, all team activities will remain virtual.

Q: When will a decision be made on a spring sports season?

A: The SCIAC Presidents and Athletic Directors have been meeting on a regular basis and will continue to do so to determine when a safe return to competition is possible. This summer, the SCIAC institutions agreed that at least four teams from a particular sport must participate in order to have a SCIAC season. Individual institutions will have autonomy to schedule nonconference games.

Q: If a student-athlete did not come to campus in the fall will he/she be able to return in the spring and live on campus?

A: Student-athletes who did not return to campus in the fall will be invited back in the spring but must complete all of Chapman University’s COVID-19 protocol as well as the student-athlete specific training from Director of Sports Medicine Pam Gibbons. To apply for housing, visit Chapman University Housing or email reslife@chapman.edu