In our continuing effort to inform and update our blog readers, we are providing the following update regarding the impact of the coronavirus and collegiate athletics.

As a result of further developments relating to the outbreak of the coronavirus (COVID-19) and the various newly announced Ivy League campus policies and potential limitations on practices and competitions, the Presidents of the eight Ivy League school members have just announced their unanimous decision to cancel all spring athletics competitions and practices through the remainder of the 2019-2020 academic year.

The decision whether the Ivy League winter athletic teams of who have qualified for postseason NCAA tournament play will participate will be left to those individuals schools to decide.

In reaction to the Ivy League announcement, Harvard University then announced that its men’s hockey team will not play in their scheduled Eastern College Athletic Conference quarterfinal series against Rensselaer. The best-of-three series was due to be played in Troy, New York, this weekend without spectators is now canceled. As a result, Harvard’s season is over and Rensselaer is expected to be awarded wins via forfeit and advance to the semifinals.

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Photo of Gregg E. Clifton Gregg E. Clifton

Gregg E. Clifton is a Principal in the Phoenix, Arizona, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. He is Co-Leader of the Collegiate and Professional Sports Practice Group and serves as the editor of the firm’s sports law blog.

Mr. Clifton has extensive experience in…

Gregg E. Clifton is a Principal in the Phoenix, Arizona, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. He is Co-Leader of the Collegiate and Professional Sports Practice Group and serves as the editor of the firm’s sports law blog.

Mr. Clifton has extensive experience in the collegiate and professional sports world. He has advised numerous professional franchises on general labor and employment issues, including Title III ADA regulatory compliance and wage and hour issues. He serves as lead counsel for several Major League Baseball teams in their salary arbitration matters and has represented NCAA and NAIA collegiate clients regarding rules compliance, investigatory matters and in disciplinary hearings. In addition, he has handled Title IX investigations and compliance issues for NCAA and NAIA member institutions. Mr. Clifton has also worked extensively in the area of agent regulation and enforcement in professional and college sports and regularly provides counsel on issues relating to NCAA and NAIA amateurism issues and athlete eligibility questions. He has also served as an expert witness in matters involving sports agents’ work and responsibilities, as well as athlete compensation issues.

Prior to joining Jackson Lewis, he spent six years as Chief Operating Officer and Vice President of Team Sports for Gaylord Sports Management. He also served as President of the Athlete and Entertainment Division for famed sports attorney Bob Woolf’s firm, Woolf Associates, in Boston.

Mr. Clifton began his career as an Associate at Jackson Lewis where he focused his practice on traditional labor law. He continues to counsel clients in the areas of collective bargaining negotiations, representation cases, arbitrations and National Labor Relations Board matters.

Mr. Clifton frequently serves as an expert speaker to law schools, including Harvard University, Boston College, Hofstra University and Arizona State University, and bar associations regarding sports law issues, including agent regulation and salary arbitration. He is also often cited as an expert source in national news media for his commentary and opinion on legal issues in sports.