OC CARES: Fall Athletics Update (July 30, 2020)

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July 30, 2020
Dear The University of Olivet Student-Athletes,
Today I write to you with information regarding fall sports at The University of Olivet. As many of you have probably seen in the world of NCAA Division III athletics, conferences and schools around the nation have made modifications to their fall athletic programs as it pertains to competition and practices for the upcoming year. At The University of Olivet, we are committed to providing you with an athletic experience which is life fulfilling, competitive and safe.
After much deliberation, countless hours of counsel and the desire to do what is right for you as a student-athlete, we have made the decision to postpone athletic competitions in high-risk sports –football, men’s and women’s soccer, and women’s volleyball – until the spring of 2021. The coaches for our low- to medium-risk fall sports – cross country, men’s and women’s tennis, and men’s and women’s golf – have been asked to explore ways to compete in non-conference events this fall. Though this was not our desired outcome, it has become increasingly clear this is the right decision for The University of Olivet and the community around us. In addition, Olivet’s announcement is also in accordance with the statement made by the Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association.
We at The University of Olivet still remain dedicated to your success as a student in the classroom and a student-athlete in your arena of competition. We are committed to continuing to provide you with this opportunity in the fall through team activities and practices. We understand the importance of the camaraderie developed within each and every team on campus and will continue to provide you with the ability to be in community with your teammates.
Below are some questions, with answers, we have already been asked.
What this means for you?
We will still be together as an athletic department this fall. You will practice with your team and work with your coaches to prepare for the upcoming spring. Your The University of Olivet family is still here for you to support you during your college experience.
What will our teams be allowed to do?
In accordance with NCAA bylaws and The University of Olivet policies, you will be able to participate in team meetings, strength and conditioning workouts, and practices with your teammates and coaches. This time will be spent continuing to work on your athletic skills and strength, as many of us have not had an opportunity to do so over the last several months.
Will practicing effect my eligibility?
No. For Division III student-athletes, participation in workouts, meetings or practices in their usual season during the fall semester will not trigger the use of a season of participation.
Additionally, the NCAA recently issued a blanket waiver which states Division III student-athletes will not be charged with participation for the 2020-21 season if a team can complete 50 percent or less of the sport’s maximum contests/dates of competition due to the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. The NCAA also issued a blanket statement stating a student-athlete will receive a two semester extension of eligibility (towards their 10-semester total) if they are unable to participate due to COVID-19 or if their team completes 50% of less of that sport’s maximum contests/dates of competition. If you have additional questions about your eligibility please contact your sport administrator
Can I be a part-time student this semester and still practice or participate in team activities?
No, according to NCAA rules a student-athlete must be enrolled full-time (12 credits or more at The University of Olivet) in order to participate in organized team activities this fall.
Do I still need to complete my pre-participation physical and eligibility requirements?
Yes, we care about the health and well-being of our students. In order to participate in any sport at The University of Olivet you must complete the pre-participation physical and the required NCAA paperwork.
As a fall student-athlete, will I still move-in on the date I signed-up for?
Yes, you will move-in on that date. Activities are still being planned for you take part in during the period between move-in and the start of classes.
In conclusion, I want to thank you for all that you do for The University of Olivet as a student-athlete and the hard work you put into developing your craft. As the world continues to move and change around us we must lean on each other during these complex times to make us all stronger in the end.
Please know that we as a department are here for you. Do not hesitate to reach out to your coaches and sport administrators with any additional questions. The entire OC athletic administrators and coaches will remain committed to you and your success both in the classroom and in competition.
If you have any additional questions, please reach out to your head coach or myself. If deemed necessary, we will add those questions and answers to this page.
Take care and be safe,
Ryan Shockey
Chief Pandemic Response Officer
Director of Athletics


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