Rutgers president on Big Ten reboot, Trump’s ‘cheap politics’ and epidemic college games


Jonathan Holloway has been “gobsmacked” by Blankback, who the Big Ten received for his decision to postpone his football season, and resentment in some corners of the country if anyone feels that changing the mind of the new Ratta president Going, it was the right decision, well, they are getting mighty disappointed.

And, yes, it also includes Donald Trump.

Holloway said in a detailed interview with NJ Advance Media on Thursday that trying to play the game during the global epidemic is not worth the risk. He made it clear that Rutgers would not change his vote on resuming college athletics, unless a better test takes place and the coronovirus is in control in places like Wisconsin, Iowa and Nebraska.

As for Trump’s involvement? The president’s decision to turn the Big Ten into a campaign issue may have made national headlines in recent weeks, but Holloway said it would have no impact on how he proceeded.

“Cheap India.” I mean, it’s just cheap politics, “Holloway said when Trump asked about injecting himself into the league’s ongoing saga. “I want that person to pay attention to matters of national security and national importance. It is not rising to that level – not for half a second.

“And even if it was a president that I was completely in love with that was doing it, I still think it would be cheap politics.”

Less than an hour after that reply, Trump was on the White House stage talking about the Big Ten, at the same news conference he addressed North Korea and made explosive revelations in a new Bob Woodward book.

“People are working hard to get Big Ten football back,” Trump emphasized, and many of those people are high-profile coaches – who, despite the league’s August decision, “have the mental and mental health of our student-athletes Cited “physical health and well-being”. – are pushing for an 11-hour exemption to start playing as early as next month.

Maybe it will happen. But Holloway, one of the 14 university presidents and chancellors who would actually make that decision, still believes that the best course of action is playing out in the spring semester so the conference “about science, different types of testing and potential vaccines might know.” “

“I know that other universities are facing unique pressures in the other direction. I get it Just here I am now, ”said Holloway. “We hope for the best, clearly. No president, whether they are insisting on starting tomorrow or January, none of us want to put our students at risk. There are varying levels of comfort and confidence in how we can move forward. “

Holloway, 53, is still in his job as the university’s 21st president, but the former Varsity footballer at Stanford insisted in one of the resulting decisions immediately in the 125-year history of the Big Ten. He called for the postponement of his vote “not a difficult decision, but it was a very inconvenient decision.”

Weeks later, the conference is still divided. The parents protested outside the league’s Chicago offices. Politicians angrily wrote letters to its Commissioner Kevin Warren. Coaches with seven-figure contracts marched with their players to oppose the decision and refused to accept any for an answer.

“Our players want to know: why can’t they play?” Ohio State coach Ryan Day asked in a statement Thursday afternoon, pointing out that Notre Dame, Clemson and other national powers are taking the field this weekend.

Coronavirus resource: Live map tracker | News bulletin | front page

Holloway, meanwhile, wants to turn the tables: why are They Playing? He knows that the Big Ten will face pressure to successfully conduct conferences such as the SEC, ACC, and Big 12, to successfully conduct COVID-19 cases on college campuses across the country. He doesn’t care – and he doesn’t think they will.

“If I was wrong because I was doing wrong on the security side, I have no problem with that,” Holle said. “I don’t think I’m wrong, though. I don’t. And if I were to lose money, we’re going to see some radical changes within a month – not after October. I’m really worried about that.” That we are moving towards college campuses in general, not just for sports. It has a deep connection. “

He said that with his decisions to play despite a nationwide crisis, coronoviruses have covered certain conventions that have curbed the value of the war on athletics.

“I’m going to come to this in a different way,” Holloway said. “The virus has revealed things that many of us have known for a long time, but now we cannot hide from that fact. And when it comes to this, what is the value of college football across the country? The virus has here exposed the truth of how various conventions are navigating that place. And I am very happy to be in the Big Ten. “

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Steve Polity can be reached [email protected].