There obviously is no answer to if or when sports will creep back into our society. If there were an answer, it would change in short order.
The Big Ten fired the most recent salvo when it declared its football teams would only play conference games. Taking the biggest hits from that announcement were two Mid-American Conference schools, Bowling Green State University and Kent State University. Bowling Green lost at least $1 million when its game against The Ohio State University was canceled, while Kent State lost at least $1 million when its game against Penn State was scrubbed. The money comes in the form of guarantees.
When I did play-by-play broadcasts for Kent State in the 1970s, there was always a game against a big-time school, first to make some money and second to give the players a chance to play in a game they would always remember. The problem was the Golden Flashes players seemed to get hurt in those early-season games and wouldn’t be ready for the conference games.
Now, with talk of conference games only for the Power Five conferences, there is a clear possibility teams could play each other twice. In the past week, I have spoken to at least 25 ex-players and alums who find it OK to play teams twice, as long as it is not Ohio State against Michigan. That shows how strong, at least from the OSU point of view that rivalry is. My first OSU-Michigan game came in 1964, which was won by Michigan. As much as I hated the loss, I knew it would not be a good idea to replay the game in the same season.
OSU has about 36 sports that are supported by its football program. Many head coaches receive well over $1 million per year.
It is clear every league, conference and sport is trying its best to play the games and just about every contingency has been thought about, but it will be a miracle if we can follow games as we know them this year.