Chancellor Malatras Announces SUNY Colleges Across Three Additional Athletic Conferences Approved to Resume Spring Intercollegiate Competition

March 10, 2021

Follows the Approval to Resume Athletic Competition in the State University of New York Athletic Conference

Incorporates SUNY's Safety Protocols and in Partnership with Local Public Health Officials, Competition is Ready to Begin for Alfred State, Morrisville, Canton, Cobleskill, Delhi, and SUNY Poly

Decision Allows More than 1,400 Student-Athletes in Baseball, Basketball, Golf, Lacrosse, Softball, Swimming & Diving, Tennis, Track & Field, and Volleyball Back for Spring Season

View Photos From Today's Announcement


Morrisville, NY
– State University of New York Chancellor Jim Malatras today announced that six SUNY colleges across three more athletic conferences have been cleared to safely resume intercollegiate sports this spring for baseball, basketball, golf, lacrosse, softball, swimming and diving, tennis, track and field, and volleyball. Chancellor Malatras made the announcement during a visit to SUNY Morrisville, where he met with student-athletes about the outlook for spring. The approval will allow more than 1,400 students from the following colleges to compete:

  • Allegheny Mountain Conference
    • Alfred State College
  • Northeastern Athletic Conference
    • SUNY Morrisville
  • North Atlantic Conference
    • SUNY Canton
    • SUNY Cobleskill
    • SUNY Delhi
    • SUNY Polytechnic Institute

"I've heard from many student-athletes that it has been difficult being off the playing field over the past year. They have done a tremendous job keeping each other safe from COVID, and with our health and safety guidance in place, we are pleased to be expanding and restarting athletic competitions for more of our colleges," said Chancellor Malatras. "We have our campus leadership, athletic departments, and local public health officials to thank for their close partnership in making sure our students can compete, which will begin almost immediately for campus plans that are approved. SUNY's colleges and universities have been all in on battling this virus, working with their communities to end this crisis. Today is proud moment for SUNY, and another step forward—and I'm looking forward to spirited competition."

SUNY Morrisville President David E. Rogers said, "It has been challenging for all of our SUNY student-athletes to be on campus without the ability to compete as a result of COVID. Our athletes, who are so dedicated to their sport and academics, have been diligently training and practicing to be ready for future competition—with today's announcement, that time is now. We are delighted and honored to have hosted Chancellor at SUNY Morrisville today to share this great news, and we look forward to cheering on our student-athletes as they return to their respective sports."

Caitlin McCutchan, SUNY Morrisville sophomore, pre-nursing, said, "On behalf of the SUNY Morrisville softball team, I want to thank Chancellor Malatras for giving student-athletes the opportunity to play, as athletics are such an important and crucial part of our college careers. While our studies are our main priority as college students, the collaboration, teamwork, and discipline, as well as the relationships that comes with playing sports teach us lesson that will last a lifetime. We are excited and eager to resume playing, and will be sure to uphold the guidelines to preserve everyone's safety throughout our season."

The following sports have been approved for resumption, including baseball and softball, as well as men's and women's basketball (fall sport for special spring season), golf, lacrosse, swimming and diving, tennis, track and field, and volleyball.

With input from University Presidents, athletic department administrators, coaches, trainers, and student-athletes, SUNY established a series of overarching guiding safety principles for all colleges and universities seeking to resume intercollegiate athletics. All plans must include:

  • Endorsement from the respective local health department.
  • One-hundred percent weekly testing of all student-athletes.
  • Student-athletes must be tested within three days of departure for road contest.
  • Student-athletes, coaching staff members, medical staff, officials, and media members must be masked at all times, except athletes during active competition or practice.
  • All schools must have COVID-19 symptom screening tools for home and visiting teams.
  • If an individual has COVID-19 symptoms en route to the contest, the team must return to its home campus.
  • If someone presents COVID-19 symptoms during a contest, that contest must be stopped immediately.
  • No handshakes, group celebrations, or pre-game or post-game interaction with opposing teams.
  • No eating on buses, and reduced bus capacity.
  • No spectators.

Alfred State President Skip Sullivan said, "Alfred State commends Chancellor Malatras and SUNY for creating a plan that will ensure our student-athletes are able to safely resume competition this spring. Our student-athletes have worked incredibly hard and deserve the right to compete safely at the collegiate level, and we cannot wait to see them back in action."

SUNY Canton President Zvi Szafran said, "We are excited for our spring sports teams as the NAC moves forward with conference competition. Thank you Chancellor Malatras, for backing this important advancement. We will continue to remain cautious and everything we do will have the safety of our student-athletes, staff, campus, and greater community in mind. Through extensive plans that aim to keep everyone as safe as possible, we look forward to letting our student-athletes enjoy the sports they love and have worked so hard to play."

SUNY Cobleskill President Marion Terenzio said, "Over the course of this pandemic, our students have demonstrated their leadership through perseverance, sacrifice, and hard work. These qualities are at the heart of athletic competition and are why it is no accident that our student-athletes have led our campus through a successful semester, arriving at a point when we can safely return to the field and the court. I can't wait to add the thrill of competition and the satisfaction of victory back to our campus experience."

SUNY Delhi President Michael Laliberte said, "We are thrilled that our student-athletes have the opportunity to return to competing in the sports they love and have trained for. As some of the most dedicated and responsible students on campus, we are confident in their ability to participate safely and represent SUNY Delhi with pride. Go Broncos!"

SUNY Polytechnic Institute Acting President Tod A. Laursen said, "SUNY Poly is thrilled that under the leadership of Chancellor Malatras, as well as the North Atlantic Conference and its members, our student-athletes will be able to engage in meaningful competition while still strictly adhering to safety guidelines to support the health of our Wildcat teams and our larger community."

Last month, Chancellor Malatras announced that the SUNY Athletic Conference had adopted a plan to safely resume spring conference competition on March 20, laying the groundwork for other SUNY colleges to submit their own spring sports plans.

Other SUNY colleges and universities seeking to resume spring sports are encouraged to work with SUNY System Administration to develop plans for review. Plans must adhere to the aforementioned guiding principles and be submitted to SUNY System Administration for approval. They must also meet the minimum requirements set forth by the NCAA, the New York State Department of Health, and the local health departments. The resumption of intercollegiate athletics is contingent upon the continued positive trajectory of the pandemic and the state of the COVID-19 virus on member campuses.

About the State University of New York
The State University of New York is the largest comprehensive system of higher education in the United States, and more than 95 percent of all New Yorkers live within 30 miles of any one of SUNY's 64 colleges and universities. Across the system, SUNY has four academic health centers, five hospitals, four medical schools, two dental schools, a law school, the state’s only college of optometry, and manages one US Department of Energy National Laboratory. In total, SUNY serves about 1.3 million students amongst its entire portfolio of credit- and non-credit bearing courses and programs, continuing education, and community outreach programs. SUNY oversees nearly a quarter of academic research in New York. Research expenditures system-wide are nearly $1.1 billion in fiscal year 2021, including significant contributions from students and faculty. There are more than three million SUNY alumni worldwide, and one in three New Yorkers with a college degree is a SUNY alum. To learn more about how SUNY creates opportunity, visit suny.edu.


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