Making a comeback: GLVC announces schedules for postponed fall sports

The Great Lakes Valley Conference has released the spring schedules for volleyball, football, and men’s and women’s soccer, while also approving the men’s and women’s basketball schedule this season.

The GLVC postponed most fall sports this semester because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Throughout October, the conference has announced new decisions that permit Truman State University Athletics to compete.

The GLVC approved both men’s and women’s basketball seasons and announced that practice for both teams could start Oct. 15. Under the newly created schedule, each team in the GLVC will play a 22-game, conference-only season and be divided into one of three five-team divisions. Truman is in the Central Division with Lindenwood University, Maryville University, University of Missouri-St. Louis and Quincy University.

“After discussing a number of scheduling parameters for the season, we are pleased to be able to proceed with our basketball schedules this year,” GLVC Commissioner Jim Naumovich said. “As we have done with all of our sports thus far, we will continue to do our due diligence in reviewing the testing guidelines put forth by the NCAA Sport Science Institute, as the health and safety of our student-athletes, coaches, administrators and fans remains our top priority.”

Each men’s and women’s basketball team in the GLVC will play 11 home games and 11 away games under the new schedule. Spectators, however, are still prohibited at GLVC basketball games.

Truman’s volleyball team has also been granted the ability to play and will kick off its season Jan. 29 against Maryville University. 

Like basketball, the GLVC split the volleyball teams into three divisions of five teams. Truman is again in a division with Lindenwood, Maryville, UMSL and Quincy. The Bulldogs will play 18 matches this season, but will only have 13 competition dates, as five consist of three teams meeting for a round-robin.

“The tri-match/pod format within this schedule is unique to the spring season and has allowed us to increase the number of competition opportunities for our student-athletes while also addressing the need to address cost-containment measures for our teams,” Naumovich said. “Although the results from these matches won’t factor into qualifying for the GLVC Volleyball Tournament Championship, they are a nice addition to a truncated season.”

The conference has yet to announce the qualification procedure for the GLVC Tournament, which is scheduled for April 15-17. 

Bulldog football is also slated to start its conference-only season this spring, but with a dramatically reduced schedule. The team will play a total of four games, starting with a scrimmage and possibly concluding with a championship weekend. 

Truman football will face off in a scrimmage against McKendree University March 27 before battling Southwest Baptist University on April 3 and hosting William Jewell College the next weekend. The ’Dogs will then head to University of Missouri Science & Technology for their final conference game. 

“Our guys are excited to potentially be moving in a positive direction from a competitive standpoint,” Head Football Coach Gregg Nesbitt wrote in a statement to The Index. “It has been difficult for our young competitors at the Div. II level as they have watched surrounding states roll out junior high and high school sports/football, along with collegiate football both at the NAIA level and NCAA Div. I level. The good news nationally is it appears no significant outbreaks with respect to COVID have been attributed to [the] sport thus far. Our guys are excited about mentally regaining a small sense of normalcy through competition and the opportunity to participate for a GLVC Championship this spring!”

The GLVC has split the football teams into two divisions: east and west. Truman is in the west division with Missouri S&T, William Jewell and Southwest Baptist. Quincy, McKendree, Indianapolis and Lindenwood make up the east division. The top seeds from each division will face off for the GLVC Championship.

Men’s and women’s soccer will also see play this spring, starting with matches against Missouri S&T Feb. 26. Both teams will play 14 matches — once against every other competitor in the conference — culminating in a conference tournament April 23-25 at Lindenwood. There will not, however, be an NCAA Championship for either team. Qualifying procedures for the conference tournament will be announced later.