University News

Western New England University, Commonwealth Coast Conference Suspend Athletic Competition for Fall Semester

Published: July 17, 2020 | Categories: All News
Golden Bear Stadium - Fifty yard line

Western New England University has made the decision to suspend all intercollegiate competition for the fall semester. This decision is consistent with today's Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) Board of Directors announcement postponing all conference competition until after January 1, 2021. The conference intends to host competitive seasons for all league-sponsored sports in the spring semester, including those that traditionally scheduled in the fall, pending NCAA guidelines.

"The move to suspend competition this fall was diligently discussed and researched by the CCC presidents with information and guidance from athletic directors, conference officials, and medical personnel," said Western New England University Athletics Director Matt LaBranche.

"The situation has been constantly evolving since March and we had sincerely hoped to be able to move forward with our fall sports season. However, the perceived risks, consequences, and realities associated with outside competition proved too great given the continued presence of COVID-19 and each of our schools' firm commitment to the health and safety of our students," LaBranche added.

Although intercollegiate competition has been suspended for the fall, all varsity athletes will engage in organized athletic activities with their teams and under the direction of their head coach. These activities will be sport specific and will include but are not limited to training, skill development, and strength and conditioning. Allowable activities will be based on the framework set out by the NCAA's Core Principles of Resocialization of Collegiate Sport and guidelines established by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and state and local governments.

"Athletics remains at all times a vital component of the student experience at Western New England University. Our excellent coaches and athletic administrators are committed to providing meaningful athletic opportunities for our students throughout the upcoming academic year," said Western New England University President Dr. Anthony S. Caprio.

In response to COVID-19 the NCAA has previously passed a number of legislative items in order to mitigate the negative effects on student-athlete eligibility and participation. With additional legislation still in progress, the Western New England University Department of Athletics will continue to provide important updates in a timely manner.

Western New England fields 20 varsity teams, competing at the NCAA Division III level as a member of the Commonwealth Coast Conference. The move to suspend competition during the fall semester will affect the schedules of 15 teams.