By Harry Allison

There has been an effort by Big 10 players and coaches to reverse the postponement of fall football, but it’s not going anywhere.

That’s what Penn State athletic director Sandy Barbour seemed to be saying yesterday when she Zoomed with reporter

Barbour’s response was hardly a surprise, but the fact that she said twice that it was unclear whether or not the presidents and chancellors at Big Ten schools even voted to make last Tuesday’s announcement was more of a shocker.

“I know that every chancellor and president moved forward and told their athletic directors that that was the decision,” Barbour said.

Last week, Minnesota President Joan Gabel called it a “deliberative” decision but wouldn’t say that a vote actually took place, according to a FOX TV affiliate in Minneapolis. Meanwhile, media reports have called the vote anywhere from 12-2 to 8-6 and some places in between.

While it’s clear that Penn State’s coaches and players wanted to hit the field and compete this fall, it continues to be unclear how exactly administrators arrived at the decision that they should not for health and safety reasons. Big Ten commissioner Kevin Warren has released a statement and took part in some interviews, but unlike the PAC-12, none of that health and safety information has been released.

“It is unclear to me whether there was a vote,” Barbour said. “Nobody’s ever told me there was. I just don’t know whether there actually was a vote by the Chancellors and Presidents.

“For five months. Penn State’s collective efforts have been the fight for a plan, have been the fight for playing sports this year. Frankly, it’s been to fight for, and to plan for, having students on campus this fall. Dr. Barron has fought. Our board has fought. Every one of our coaches has fought, and I have fought.

“I want to play. Our board wants to play, and you’re fully aware that our coaches and student-athletes and their families want to play, but it’s never been about playing at all costs or under any circumstances. We all want to play, and we have turned our attention to what that next opportunity might be to play for our fall sports, and we’re working to make sure that we do everything we can to improve the circumstances under which we might play.”

Barbour added that she does believe a spring semester season is viable and that the Big Ten could release plans on that front as soon as next week. The NCAA is expected to release information about how often student-athletes who do not have a season can practice and spend time around their coaches, as well, over the next few weeks.

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