Former players weigh in on impact of a spring football schedule
Purdue head coach Jeff Brohm had folks talking Thursday morning with the release of a comprehensive plan for football to be played in the Big Ten this spring.
Under the proposal, teams would play an eight game (2020) schedule followed in October by a 10-game campaign for 2021.
You can read Brohm’s entire proposal below:
At first glance, it doesn't seem like a wise idea.
A minimum of 18 games in a 10-month span, coupled with the rigors of practice initially seems like a lot. Or does it?
SEC commissioner Greg Sankey and Georgia athletic director Greg McGarity have both said in the past that a spring schedule was always “Plan B,” which proved true. The SEC, Big 12, and ACC each announced earlier this week that they intended to follow the advice of their medical experts and will attempt to play this fall for now.
But that still raises the question: Would playing basically two seasons over a 10-month period even be possible?
If so, what other ramifications might occur?
“That’s very thoughtful and interesting,” former Bulldog offensive lineman John Theus said. “It’s doable, but the spring season would be played without the Trevor Lawrences of the world. Those guys are going to go get their millions in the NFL.”
Theus’ comments were echoed by others.
Former Bulldog offensive lineman Matt Stinchcomb did not believe any draft-eligible players would risk playing a spring season.
Former running back Keith Marshall agreed.
“My feelings are that they are scrambling, trying to put something together that would work. But in reality, there’s a lot going on that they’re ultimately at the mercy of,” Marshall said. “It would certainly be physically demanding. But I think it’s feasible, given the current structure is already demanding. I do think you’d have a lot of draft-eligible players sit out the spring.”
Former wide receiver Terrence Edwards had one initial fear.
“That’s still a lot of football in one calendar year,” he said.
Others agreed with Marshall that physically it might be possible.
The way former Bulldog offensive lineman Chris Burnette sees it, having a spring season would not be that much heavier of a workload, noting that “most players loathe spring ball anyway.”
However, like others, he believes there would be a lot of opting out by draft-eligible players; for returning players, Burnette believes the proposed schedule would work.
Still, other questions would remain.
“What if you’re a junior who balls out in the spring? Can he leave early and go to the NFL after the spring season, or is he stuck at college for the 2021 season now?” Theus asked. “Could early enrollees play in the spring season? To me, there are a lot of questions to answer with that plan.”