Lewis: We Don't Know When – Or If – The Season Will Start

Marvin Lewis and the Arizona State coaching staff hope there will be college football in 2020, but the coronavirus may have other plans

Tiki and Tierney
May 20, 2020 - 7:36 am
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Marvin Lewis remains hopeful that the 2020 college football season will occur, but he and his fellow Arizona State coaches do not know whether it will actually happen – or happen on time.

“That, no, we are not [sure of], and that’s not my thing,” Lewis told Tiki & Tierney. “I think it was last Monday or Tuesday, it was about 5 a.m., and I’m heading down to work out, and Herm [Edwards] is sitting outside his office at 5 a..m. He looks like a beat puppy. I’m like, ‘What’s wrong?’ He [goes], ‘We’re done.’”

Edwards was upset that some states had already made bold proclamations about the coronavirus months in advance. Oregon Governor Kate Brown, for example, announced that no sporting events with large crowds will take place through September. On the flip side, some states, such as New York, California, and Texas could host pro sports in the coming weeks

“I said, ‘Well, coach, that ain’t us, so let’s keep going on. Don’t worry about what we can’t control,’” Lewis said. “And that’s the thing. It’s no different than what we experienced a few years back with the NFL lockout. We had all these plans in place [about when we were going to come back]. Well, we’re going to come back when everybody says we can come back. So we just keep working. What we’ve tried to instill in the players is, ‘You’ve got a great time to do the best job you can in school.’”

Lewis, Arizona State’s co-defensive coordinator, was also asked about the Rooney Rule, which NFL owners updated Tuesday. Teams will now be required to interview at least two minority candidates from outside their organization for any head-coaching job and at least one minority candidate from outside their organization for any offensive, defensive, or special-teams coordinator job.

“I think it’s a good thing,” said Lewis, who served as Bengals head coach from 2003 to 2018. “Whether or not [the Rooney Rule is] working, unfortunately we’re still talking about it here almost 16 years later. That’s the unfortunate part. It hasn’t made an effect and change on GMs, coordinators, and so forth. So we’re still trying to make progress in those areas. But I do think, yes, making club management take a little deeper dive is important and to get to know more candidates. I think for minorities, for them to know they have an opportunity and to get prepared [for] when they get that opportunity that, No. 1, they can put their best foot forward, and secondly, when they get the job, to do the best job they can.”