In an effort to safeguard students and limit the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19), College of the Ozarks made a decision last week to extend students’ return from spring break until March 30th.

In addition, College of the Ozarks was notified mid-morning on Monday, March 16, that the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) has canceled the spring 2020 sports season effective immediately. As an NAIA member, this decision results in the cancellation of practices and competition for the College’s baseball, men’s and women’s golf, and men’s and women’s track and field teams. 

NAIA President Jim Carr comments, “All possible options for maintaining the spring season were discussed at great length by multiple governance groups. However, the growing state of emergency due to COVID-19, as well as the Center for Disease Control’s recommendation yesterday to limit gatherings to fewer than 50 people for eight weeks, meant we could not in good conscience move forward, possibly putting student-athletes, staff, and fans at risk.”

College of the Ozarks Dean of Sports, Recreation and Events Chris Larsen is also the head coach of men’s and women’s golf, so the decision was especially impactful. “While we are incredibly disappointed for our winter and spring student-athletes who will not be able to complete their season,” Larsen stated, “we recognize the NAIA’s decision will allow us to further safeguard the student-athletes and do our part in limiting the spread of COVID-19.” 

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