Clemson Favored As Coronavirus Cases Offer College Football Roadblock

  • The Clemson Tigers have the shortest odds at +350 to win the 2021 CFP National Championship.
  • The NCAA allowed college football teams to begin voluntary practices on June 1.
  • LSU, Clemson, Kansas State and the University of Texas all had 10+ players test positive for Covid-19 this offseason.

CLEMSON, S.C. — The ongoing coronavirus pandemic has sent the upcoming college football season into a cloud of doubt as teams and colleges try to adapt to a crisis that they haven’t seen before. Unlike many of the other major sporting leagues, college football finds itself in a peculiar position since its players aren’t paid and the elite players hold the right to skip out on the season in preparation for the 2021 NFL Draft.

However, if there’s no college football season that will leave an enormous void at sportsbooks and will put even more pressure on the NFL to have a season.

This could be just the start of the problems for the NCAA and college football as more teams are dealing with numerous players testing positive for COVID-19 with no guarantee a season will be played.

With different states handling the pandemic in different ways, it’s hard to imagine the NCAA finding a way to govern the conferences this season especially when it comes to player travel and fan safety.

“Until now, I would say the last six weeks have been amazingly positive and everything has been geared towards the season and that hit a roadblock over the weekend. It was a grim, dark weekend for college football – and by the way, for every other sport, too. I mean it’s not like anyone has figured this thing out but college football has the most challenging road ahead,” said Paul Finebaum.

Over the past month, some of the biggest football programs have seen athletes and staff testing positive for the coronavirus.

The defending national champion LSU Tigers had at least 30 players in quarantine recently and the team they beat in 2020 national championship game, the Clemson Tigers had 28 athletes and staff members test positive for the illness.

Despite the spikes in cases for Clemson their odds to win the 2021 College Football Playoff (CFP) are still the shortest at +350.

The NCAA allowed teams to hold voluntary practices starting June 1 and since then COVID-19 cases have spiked with players in the Texas Longhorns and Kansas State Wildcats among other football programs testing positive.

While the start of the college in limbo most pro sports leagues have the advantage of setting up a bubble city for their leagues to resume play. The NCAA doesn’t have that option as there are too many colleges with football teams and travel could also be a bigger issue for smaller schools.

College football also has a plethora of young players who aren’t the most at risk for COVID-19 but even if one athlete gets truly sick (or worse) from the virus, that’d be too much for many athletic departments who would be facing scrutiny.

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Some college campuses haven’t even opened back up to students and don’t know if they will be in the fall. This is one of the biggest factors in there being a college football season or not.

While it looks bleak for the college football season currently, remain hopeful as online sportsbooks still list odds for what team will win the 2021 CFP.

Odds To Win the 2021 College Football Playoff

  • Clemson Tigers +350
  • Ohio State Buckeyes +400
  • Alabama Crimson Tide +600
  • Georgia Bulldogs +1000
  • Florida Gators +1600

Even more doubt has been cast over the college football regular season as the Iowa Hawkeyes athletics department reportedly suspended their ticket sales for the time being due to the pandemic.

It’s too early to gauge whether the college football season will go on as planned but right now the NCAA having a football season seems like a longshot, but only time will tell as the United States tries to rid itself of the coronavirus.

A new normal is occurring around America and hopefully, the pandemic doesn’t keep college football from being played even if there are no fans in the stands.

College football may be able to survive some of the coronavirus concerns but in order to have a season, they’ll need to see if more states can decrease their COVID-19 cases.