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The Pros, Cons Of Playing College Football In The Spring

Utah Utes defensive end Mika Tafua (42) celebrates after getting a sack on Colorado Buffaloes quarterback Steven Montez, not pictured, during the first half of an NCAA football game at Rice-Eccles Stadium in Salt Lake City on Saturday, Nov. 30, 2019. Courtesy of Deseret News.

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – The college football world will be completely different in 2020 and 2021 as we will experience something that has never happened before.

That is a college football season in the spring. It’s not official, but the Pac-12 announced on Tuesday that they would postpone all fall sports competition until at least January 1. Officials did mention that the option to play football in the spring is open.

But, what are the pros and cons of playing a college football season in the spring?

Pros

Having A Football Season

This is a pretty simple one. Just having a college football season at this point is a pro. After waiting since January 2020 until sometime around March or April 2021 to see Utah football or the Pac-12 or the Mountain West or really any college football, knowing that it will happen shows light at the end of the tunnel.

Many will still hope for the ACC, SEC and Big 12 to proceed with their plans to play in the fall but mainly for the state of Utah, that won’t happen.

Two College Seasons In One Calendar Year

This only applies to fans unless the coaches and players want to play two seasons in one year. College football fans obviously can’t get enough of the sport which is why they watch it. Now, imagine having a season from March to June (just throwing it out there, not official) and then having another season in September. That would be a college football fans’ dream.

I know a lot of fans would be all for that. The only problem is that it will take around 14 months between the 2019 season and the next time college football is played.

Player Development

Spring football practice is the prime opportunity for coaches to get their hands on the young talent that is new to their program and to begin the development process. For Utah, that’s what they hang their hat on is development.

In this case, spring football practice would be canceled once again because you would have a season instead of spring practice. This could benefit the young talent because as Sean O’Connell said on the KSL Sports Facebook page (below), the best way to develop talent is game reps. This would be even more beneficial if that school lost some of their star players to the NFL Draft or opting out. That would give them a chance to step up and contribute right away which would speed up their development.

Cons

Too Much Wear, Tear On Student-Athletes In One Year

We all know that football is a high-contact sport. Guys get hurt all the time. But, when you go through 12-15 games in one season depending on how good your season is, that’s a lot to put a body through. Especially at a young age. NFL players play 16 games in the regular season and more if depending on how far into the playoffs they advance. But, that’s just one season in a calendar year. Players are not having to play two full seasons in one year in the NFL.

As Urban Meyer said on the Crimson Corner podcast, there is “no chance” to a college football season being played in the spring.

“I don’t think there’s any chance and when a season’s over if a player plays 1,000 reps, that’s a lot of football,” Meyer told KSL Sports. “Your body, their shoulders, your neck, you’re just fatigued especially the high contact positions. Those players I would not make them do a lot during spring practice because their bodies aren’t fully healed from the wear and tear of a season.”

Lose Potential Star Players To Opting Out

With the college football season being moved to the spring, many players that are eligible to enter the NFL Draft will have a decision to make. The NFL Scouting Combine, Senior Bowl and the Draft all take place in the spring. The league isn’t going to move things around to accommodate the moved college football season.

So, what does that do for star players in college football that will be high draft picks? Do they just skip their senior (or junior) season and enter the draft based off of the tape they already have?

It won’t help the cause of the bigger schools in the country because they rely on their star players.

Pac-12 Football Season Postponed Until Spring

The Pac-12 Conference will postpone their fall sports including football until the spring. KSL Sports personalities Trevor Allen, Sean O'Connell, Tom Hackett and Mitch Harper breakdown the news.

Posted by KSL Sports on Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Trevor Allen is a Utah Utes Insider for KSLSports.com and host of the Crimson Corner podcast. Follow him on Twitter: @TrevorASportsYou can download and listen to the podcast, here.

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