In a recent survey, 24 of 45 players admitted they'd want to delay the college football season if fans weren't allowed inside stadiums. Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

College football players surveyed want to return to campus in the fall

While speaking on ESPN's "Get Up" on Wednesday morning, Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh said he'd rather the college football season take place behind closed doors and without fans in stadiums than for the season to be canceled because of the coronavirus pandemic.

"Darn near every guy I've talked to on our team, that's the way they feel about it," Harbaugh said.

The Michigan players aren't alone.

On Friday, David Ubben and The Athletic Staff released the findings from a survey of 45 players from the Power 5 conference, the Group of 5 and the FCS regarding the upcoming football season that's set to begin in late August. Eighty percent of those polled said they want to return to campus for fall terms, even if non-student-athletes are not allowed to do the same.

The Athletic added: "On a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 being extremely uncomfortable and 5 being extremely comfortable (with returning to campuses), zero players said that they would be extremely uncomfortable. Only three rated their comfort level with a return as a 2."

Twenty-four of 45 players admitted they'd vote to delay the season's kickoff if fans weren't allowed inside stadiums for the season's opening week. 

As with athletes across professional sports, the college players mentioned concerns about what happens when one of their own tests positive for the coronavirus. It's not yet known what steps would be taken by a university, conference or the NCAA if several teams were directly impacted by the virus outbreak. 

Earlier this week, the NCAA agreed to allow football players and men's and women's basketball players to return to campuses for voluntary workouts beginning June 1. 

On Friday, the SEC announced member universities can welcome athletes back to facilities on June 8. 

Zac Wassink is a football and futbol aficionado who is a PFWA member and is probably yelling about Tottenham Hotspur at the moment. Erik Lamela and Eli Manning apologist. Chanted for Matt Harvey to start the ninth inning of Game 5 of the 2015 World Series at Citi Field. Whoops. You can find him on Twitter at @ZacWassink


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