Canadian NCAA star RB Chuba Hubbard lends voice to the #WeWantToPlay movement as conferences mull cancellation

Photo courtesy: Peyton Aufill, Oklahoma State Athletics

The NCAA’s reigning rushing champ and Canadian Heisman hopeful Chuba Hubbard was one of dozens of prominent players to share a formatted statement in an attempt to save the college football season.

The image and simple hashtag was shared by almost every star player in the NCAA, including the projected top two NFL draft picks, Clemson University quarterback Trevor Lawrence and Ohio State University signal caller Justin Fields. Players are demanding better protections in the face of coronavirus and are inching close to unionization, but they are also opposing the decision by some conferences to consider cancelling the season or moving it to spring.

NCAA Division II and Division III has already cancelled fall championships, as have several FCS conferences. The University of Connecticut became the first FBS school to pull the plug on 2020 over both medical and economic fears, with the Mid-American Conference following suit on Saturday. A report in the Detroit Free Press on Monday morning indicated that the Big Ten would become the first Power 5 conference to make the decision with an announcement coming Tuesday and others expected to follow suit.

Hubbard, the Canadian superstar, made headlines this off-season when he showed the leadership to call out his head coach for racially insensitive behaviour in the wake of the Black Lives Matter movement. Now he is part of the group spearheading potential player unionization in college football, but the hopes to play a 2020 season goes against the advice of public health officials.

Fellow Canadian and Big Ten health and safety advocate Benjamin St-Juste expressed his own frustration on Twitter.

“The situation was fumbled way back in March and y’all surprised????????,” he wrote as players began to throw their support behind the season.

NCAA football hangs in the balance, with players seeking the opportunity to potentially risk their own safety to play in a COVID-19 pandemic-ridden United States.