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MAC cancels fall football season, will explore spring season

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There will be no football season for Central Michigan in 2020. 

After failing to come to a decision earlier in the week, the presidents of the 12 schools that comprise the Mid-American Conference elected to cancel the conference's fall football season. The news was first reported Saturday by Stadium's Brett McMurphy. 

The MAC is the first conference to elect to cancel its football season. The decision stems from safety concerns dealing with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, according to McMurphy's report. 

Additionally, each of the MAC's 12 schools are dealing with the financial implications that came with the Power Five conferences' decision to trim or outright eliminate the non-conference portion of their schedules. As a result of the decision to do so, Central Michigan lost out on $2.15 million that it would've earned from playing Big Ten opponents Nebraska and Northwestern. 

McMurphy's report indicates that Northern Illinois' president Lisa Freeman made her university's unwillingness to play due to health concerns clear at a conference-wide president's meeting on Thursday. After the presidents left the meeting without a vote on Thursday, the group reconvened and elected to follow NIU's lead on Saturday. 

The conference will reportedly explore the possibility of playing a season in the spring.