Statement Following This Week’s Decisions Cancelling Competitions

Valparaiso University fully supports decisions made by the Missouri Valley Conference, the Summit League and the NCAA in cancelling all remaining MVC and Summit League winter and spring contests and NCAA championship events. 

These decisions were made out of an abundance of caution to keep our campus community safe and healthy and to reduce the spread of COVID-19 to more vulnerable populations. 

STATEMENT FROM DIRECTOR OF ATHLETICS MARK LABARBERA:

“The events of the last 48 hours have been nothing short of heartbreaking as we’ve entered previously unprecedented territory with the cancellation of numerous winter and spring contests over this and the coming weeks. It has been difficult to see our student-athletes lose meaningful games and practices through no fault of their own. In some cases, seasons and careers have ended abruptly. In my time working in collegiate athletics, I have developed a deep appreciation for the work that our student-athletes put into their studies and sports.

“Our student-athletes have dedicated many hours to the pursuit of excellence both in competition and in the classroom, successfully navigating academic rigor while also meeting the significant time demands of competing in Division-I athletics on a national level. They’ve made a total commitment to excelling both academically and athletically while striving to make a positive impact in our community, and because of that we as administrators, coaches, faculty members and staff members have seen them reach their full potential. 

“Although the decision to cancel events came with great sadness, we must keep the health and well-being of our student-athletes and the local, regional and national communities at the forefront of our decision-making process. I would like to thank and commend our student-athletes for the maturity with which they’ve handled this unprecedented and difficult time. I have been impressed by the understanding they have displayed and the high character that this challenging time has showcased. The support they’ve shown for one another through this process has reinforced what we already knew: We have a special community on this campus and a caring group of student-athletes who embody our University’s values.

“This is a fluid situation and we will continue to communicate updates to our student-athletes, coaches and members of the broader campus community. Once again, I would like to thank our student-athletes and coaches for all they have done and will continue to do to meet this challenge and help us emerge as a stronger community because of it.”