We will continue to add additional PEAR FAQs to this page as they are developed.

Fall 2020 | Facilities | Varsity Student-Athlete Elegibility | Health Questions | Other Questions | Sport Clubs | PE Classes | Recruiting

Fall 2020

Will there be fall intercollegiate sports?

Carleton will not be competing in fall intercollegiate varsity or club sports during the fall 2020 term. Teams will be able to practice in small groups following NCAA/MIAC/Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) phasing guidelines.

When will decisions be made about winter sports?

We are hopeful that winter teams can begin practice on their designated NCAA start dates. Winter sports teams will not be competing during fall term, but no further decision has been made for any competitions after fall 2020 term. Additionally, decisions about Winter Break or when teams can return after Winter Break will be made at a later date.

What about spring sports? Will they have the opportunity to engage in their non-traditional seasons?

Information on spring sports traditional (competitions) season will be available at a later date. The goal is to provide those programs the opportunity to participate in their non-traditional seasons. Teams will be able to practice in small groups following NCAA/MIAC/MDH phasing guidelines.

Will fall athletes return to campus early to begin pre-season?

No. Student-athletes will arrive on campus with other students in accordance to the general Carleton return to campus plan.

Will athletic teams who are not competing continue to function as teams? Will they have coaches?

It is expected that coaches will be permitted to engage with their teams and student-athletes under current NCAA and MDH guidelines. Per NCAA guidance in their 2020 NCAA Division III COVID-19 Question and Answer Guide released on July 7th:  a coach may engage in athletically related activity with their student-athlete if the institution does not sponsor competition for fall sports in 2020 provided that the athletically related activity is within the declared playing season. (Bylaw 17.1.1).

What will it be like to participate on a team this fall?

All student-athletes will continue to be provided with workout plans, academic and personal support, and leadership development opportunities by our coaching staff per current NCAA and MDH guidelines. Regardless of their location (on or off-campus), student-athletes will be able to have athletic-related meetings online with coaches. Student-athletes not returning to campus for the fall term will not be permitted to participate in individual or small group in-person workouts. All activities will be held in accordance with federal, state, local, and institutional safety guidelines as well as NCAA guidelines.

Will there be different rules for contact and non-contact sports?

At this time, these will be different per current NCAA and MDH phasing guidelines.

Will teams be allowed to travel off-campus for practice?

As long as they are able to maintain social distance guidelines, the men’s & women’s golf teams will be permitted to travel off-campus for practice at nearby Northfield Golf Club and Twin Oaks Driving Range. At this time, no other teams will be permitted to travel off-campus.

What will practice look like for winter sports that require an indoor facility?

All indoor practices will follow current NCAA and MDH phasing guidelines for athletics and facilities.

Will locker rooms be available for student use?

We will follow current NCAA and MDH phasing guidelines for athletics and facilities. Locker rooms will not be available during Phase I. After that, locker rooms will be available on a limited basis, and students will be asked to follow Carleton’s facility phasing regarding wearing a face covering inside buildings on campus. Our custodial staff will have enhanced daily cleaning protocols in place for our athletic facilities, including locker rooms.

Will athletic spaces, such as fields, courts, and the Arboretum be available for student use or for student-led workouts and optional practices?

More information about this topic will be available at a later date.

Will teams have access to the Strength and Conditioning coaches?

The Strength and Conditioning staff intends to hold modified sessions for student-athletes. The schedule will be different from past years to allow for increased sanitation and social distancing procedures as well as the use of outdoor spaces. Additional safety procedures will be communicated to student-athletes by the staff.


When will the Rec Center, West Gym, Cowling and Laird Stadium reopen?

As we aim to support the objective of preventing the spread of COVID-19, it has been decided that all PEAR facilities are closed until further notice.  Decisions for hours will be posted on our Rec Center website as soon as they are determined. 

When will outdoor PEAR Facilities be open for use? (fields, tennis courts, outdoor track)

The following PEAR spaces are open for use:

  • Bell Field Tennis Courts
  • Laird Stadium Outdoor Track

Please adhere to the posted social distancing guidelines at each facility.

For the rest of our outdoor facility spaces, at this time, we continue to support the objective of preventing the spread of COVID-19 and they will be closed until further notice. Decisions for availability and hours will be posted on our Rec Center website as soon as they are determined.

Varsity Student-Athlete Eligibility

How does this decision affect my NCAA eligibility?

According to NCAA rules, student-athletes would not use a season of participation if they did not compete during the fall season. The NCAA released this information in their 2020 NCAA Division III COVID-19 Question and Answer Guide on July 7th: 

Question No. 12: If a student-athlete engages in athletically related activity within the declared playing season in which no outside competition will be conducted, will the student-athlete be charged with a season of participation? 

Answer: No. A student-athlete is only charged with a season of participation when the student-athlete participates (practices or competes) during or after the first contest in the traditional segment. If the student-athlete’s engagement in athletically related activity does not include outside competition, the student-athlete may practice without being charged with a season of participation.

If a student-athlete chooses to take a term or the entire year off, how does that affect their standing on their team?

Student-athletes should make the best decision for themselves and their team. Those that elect to take time off will likely return to eligibility but will be subject to NCAA and MIAC rules and waivers.

What impact would participating in a nontraditional season have on my athletic eligibility?

Fall sport athletes would not use a season of eligibility under NCAA rules if their team does not compete against another institution during the fall season. Winter sport athletes on campus during the fall term would not use a season of eligibility if they practice during the fall term and their team does not compete in the winter term. Spring sport athletes would not use a season of eligibility if they practice during their nontraditional season during the fall term.

Will a leave of absence be necessary to stay on track from an NCAA eligibility perspective?

No. A leave of absence is not necessary. Because Carleton is not competing in the Fall of 2020, a student-athlete is not using a season of eligibility. Student-athletes have 15 full-time terms to complete four seasons of participation in a sport. An NCAA waiver will be considered for any student-athlete who may need to exceed 15 terms of eligibility as a result of circumstances beyond their control.

Student-Athlete Health Questions

Will student-athletes still need to complete medical forms (uploaded to SportsWareOnline) and eligibility forms (in Front Rush), as the compliance email stated? Have there been any changes to these protocols?

All student-athletes received an email detailing the medical and eligibility forms in May, which can also be found on our website here: https://athletics.carleton.edu/sports/2019/7/17/student-athlete-resources.aspx

All student-athletes will receive information regarding the current clearance requirements for diagnosed/assumed cases of COVID-19 with regards to athletic participation. Depending on the severity of symptoms, some clearances may require specific cardiac screening that should be performed prior to arriving on campus. Additional requests for completing online forms, baseline screening and education will be sent later this summer. 

Will varsity student-athletes have access to Athletic Training services?

Yes, but access and services will be limited. All visits will require an appointment, and overall volume will be kept to a minimum. Daily pre/post-activity treatments such as e-stim, hot packs and whirlpools may be suspended. Regular athletic taping procedures may be replaced. Injury evaluation and referral services will continue to be available. Social distancing, masking and hand-washing requirements will be strictly enforced. All athletes will need to have a personal water bottle for practices and workouts, and it will be the athlete’s responsibility to clean their water bottle on a daily basis.

How will Sports Medicine services operate?

The Athletic Training Room will use telehealth and in-person appointment systems for evaluation, treatments, and rehabilitation of injuries/illness for both on-campus and off-campus student-athletes throughout the 2020-21 academic year. Care standards will remain the same, but could take longer due to capacity limits, daily screenings, temperature checks, and new safety procedures. Additional safety procedures will be communicated to student-athletes by the Sports Medicine staff.

How will Team Physician Services operate?

Telehealth and in-person visits with team physicians will be available on a schedule and location to be determined

Student-Athlete Personal Hygiene

Following reopening, student-athletes will be expected to follow all College public health guidelines when entering campus buildings. This includes but is not limited to washing hands frequently and wearing a face covering. At this time, all faculty, staff, and students are required to wear a face covering that covers both their nose and mouth at all times while in the presence of others or while in indoor public spaces (e.g., common workspaces, restrooms, hallways, stairwells, elevators, meeting rooms, classrooms, laboratories, etc.). Face coverings are required to be worn in outdoor public spaces when physical distancing of six feet or greater cannot be maintained.

Are there certain medical conditions, in relation to COVID-19, that might preclude me from participating in organized athletic activity?

As outlined in the NCAA Resocialization of Sport document, specific underlying medical conditions such as moderate to severe asthma, immunocompromised status, severe obesity, diabetes or additional heart, lung, kidney or liver disease have all been identified as conditions that may place an individual into a higher-risk category. It is recommended that individuals with increased risk factors refrain from participation in the early stages of organized athletic activity.  The presence of increased risk factors may require additional documentation from your primary physician, and all final participation clearances are at the discretion of the Sports Medicine Staff.

Other Questions

What happens if Carleton does not field teams but other MIAC schools do?

The Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (MIAC) has not yet determined what will happen with conference play.

Are there other Division III colleges and universities that have canceled their fall semester varsity athletics programs?

Yes. As of July 10th the following colleges and universities that have canceled their fall semester varsity athletics programs: Amherst, Bates, Bowdoin, Bryn Mawr, Case Western Reserve, Claremont McKenna, Carnegie Mellon, Colby, Connecticut College, Dickinson, Frankline & Marshall, Gettysburg, Grinnell, Hamilton, Haverford, John Hopkins, McDaniel, Middlebury, MIT, Mount Holyoke, Muhlenberg, Oberlin, Pomona Pitzer, Pratt Institute, RPI, Sarah Lawrence, Swarthmore, Trinity College, Tufts, UMass Boston, Ursinus, Washington College, Wellesley, Wesleyan and Williams.

Conferences that are not having Fall Sport Competitions:  NESCAC, Centennial Conference.

PEAR Sport Clubs

Questions about sport clubs?

Please email Aaron Chaput, Director of Sport Clubs, with any questions.

PE classes

Questions about PE Classes?

We will be offering PE class opportunities both in-person and virtually. More information will be provided soon.


Can a prospective student-athlete visit the Carleton campus now or in the near future?

Carleton has suspended all visit programs and visits to campus until further notice. Please see the Carleton Admissions Visit page for more information.