Which Players Have Opted Out of the 2020 College Football Season so Far?

The continued spread of the novel coronavirus pandemic across the U.S. means the prospects of the college football season getting underway as scheduled at the end of month have grown slimmer by the day.

On Saturday, the Mid-American became the first FBS Conference to postpone football until the spring of 2021 and multiple reports on Monday suggested the Big Ten and Pac-12 will officially cancel their seasons later this week.

In the unlikely event of football going ahead as scheduled in the fall, a number of players will not take part in the upcoming college football season after opting out with at least one player from every Power 5 conference—the Atlantic Coast Conference, Big 12, Pac-12, Big Ten and Southeastern Conference—deciding against playing this year.

Following the example of their NFL counterparts, some have cited concerns related to the COVID-19 outbreak as their reason to skip the 2020 season, while others will start preparing for the NFL Draft next year and have opted out of the season in order to minimize the risks of suffering an injury or contracting coronavirus.

Penn State linebacker Micah Parsons falls in the latter category along with Virginia Tech defensive back Caleb Farley and Minnesota wide receiver Rashod Bateman.

Micah Parsons, Penn State
Micah Parsons #11 of the Penn State Nittany Lions during the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic at AT&T Stadium on December 28, 2019 in Arlington, Texas Benjamin Solomon/Getty

The trio—who were all due to begin their junior seasons—will be joined on the sidelines by a host of other starters, including Purdue wideout Rondale Moore, Pittsburgh defensive tackle Jalen Twyman and Maryland quarterback Josh Jackson. The Terrapins are one of many programs with multiple players choosing not to play this season, with six withdrawals as of Tuesday morning.

Both Duke and South Carolina will be without at least two players each, while North Carolina has reported three withdrawals, including starter defensive back D.J. Ford. Meanwhile, a quartet of Michigan State players, including starting defensive end Jacub Panasiuk and starting right tackle Jordan Reid have both opted out.

Earlier this month, the NCAA Board of Directors stated schools had to honor the scholarship of the players who choose to opt out.

"All student-athletes must be allowed to opt out of participation due to concerns about contracting COVID-19," the NCAA requirements read.

"If a college athlete chooses to opt out, that individual's athletics scholarship commitment must be honored by the college or university."

Here's a list of FBS players who have opted out so far.

  • Arizona State QB Kevin Doyle
  • Auburn—LB Chandler Wooten
  • Duke—LS Ben Wyatt, OL Jacob Rimmer
  • Florida State—Jamarcus Chatman
  • Houston—DT Sedrick Wilson
  • Illinois—RB Ra'Von Bonner
  • Maryland—DL Jalen Alexander, OL Austin Fontaine, OL Johnny Jordan, QB Josh Jackson, DB Vincent Flythe, LB T.J. Kautai
  • Miami—DE Gregory Rousseau
  • Michigan State—OT Justin Stevens, LB Marcel Lewis, DE Jacub Panasiuk, RT Jordan Reid
  • Minnesota—WR Rashod Bateman
  • New Mexico State—DL Jomaious Williams
  • North Carolina—DB D.J. Ford, DB Bryce Watts, DB Javon Terry
  • Penn State—LB Micah Parsons
  • Pittsburgh—DT Jalen Twyman
  • Purdue—WR Rondale Moore
  • South Carolina—OL Mark Fox, OL Jordan Rhodes
  • Syracuse—DL Cooper Dawson
  • UAB—RB Daquon Godfrey
  • USF—WR Jernard Phillips, DT John Waller
  • Vanderbilt—PK Oren Milstein
  • Virginia Tech—DB Caleb Faley
  • Washington State—DB Pat Nunn, WR Kassidy Woods
  • West Virginia—S K.J. Martin
Rashod Bateman, Minnesota
Rashod Bateman #13 of the Minnesota Golden Gophers carries the ball against the Wisconsin Badgers during the first quarter of the game at TCF Bank Stadium on November 30, 2019 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Bateman scored a touchdown on the play. Hannah Foslien/Getty