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To: Stevens Students, Faculty and Staff Members
From: Stevens Athletic Communications
Date: January 14, 2021   
Subject: Winter Sports Update

Although the Middle Atlantic Conference (MAC) has elected to move forward with winter sports, the Stevens Institute of Technology Department of Athletics has made the difficult decision to opt out of the abbreviated 2020-21 winter schedule, Director of Athletics Russell Rogers announced Thursday. This decision applies to MAC-related intercollegiate competition only, specifically impacting men's and women's basketball and wrestling.

"This decision is part of our process to do all we can to provide a meaningful experience for all Stevens student-athletes while promoting their health and safety" Rogers said. "We will closely monitor COVID-19 conditions on a daily basis and follow the guidance of our local and state health authorities at all times. I want to extend my sincerest appreciation to our coaches and sports medicine staff for their leadership in navigating this challenging situation and to our student-athletes for their patience, understanding, and perseverance."

Originally scheduled to resume practice in the coming days for a potential season opener in February, both basketball programs will instead shift their focus on conducting a six-to-eight-week season that will focus on practices, strength and conditioning sessions and team bonding activities, as the programs aim for a full return to the court for the 2021-22 season. Should the opportunity arise for intercollegiate competition against local and in-state opponents whose health and safety precautions align with Stevens' full range of COVID-19 protocols, including a rigorous COVID-19 testing regimen, reasonable efforts will be made to do so.

"The safety and health of our student-athletes, staff and campus community is of utmost importance as we continue to battle this pandemic," said head women's basketball coach Megan Haughey. "Our student-athletes are excited to get back to campus to practice, improve their skills, and if all goes well, find opponents who are in line with our testing and other COVID-19 protocols."

"We are so excited to provide our student-athletes with the opportunity to get back on the court to play, and we hope that it will bring some normalcy back into their lives," head men's basketball coach Bobby Hurley added. "We are grateful to our Sports Medicine staff and to our administration who have worked tirelessly to make this happen safely."

Wrestling has finalized its return to play protocols. Although the MAC announced the cancellation of its wrestling championship in December 2020, Stevens will still attempt to put together a schedule of intercollegiate competition against local and in-state opponents whose health and safety precautions align with Stevens' full range of COVID-19 protocols, including a rigorous testing regimen. The NCAA Division III Wrestling Championships are scheduled for March 12-13. 

"We want to thank President Farvardin, Vice President Marybeth Murphy, Russ Rogers, and our entire medical staff for their support and tremendous efforts to put our wrestling program in an opportunity to succeed this season," said head coach Joe Favia. "They have given us confidence through their thoroughness and preparation, providing our program with a safe and supportive environment. We are grateful to be back on the mats competing and representing our university."

Men's and women's swimming, which is usually a winter sport, is not impacted by today's decision because the MAC elected to move the swimming season to early March with an eye towards a potential conference championship meet in mid-April. At this time, the plan for track and field is to begin preparing for their outdoor season.

Further details on the return to sports plans for other varsity sports will be forthcoming.