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Morning Power Bar: Football Is Back; Election Day Updates; Harrison Ingram

We look at this week in college basketball.

NCAA Basketball: Michigan State at Wisconsin Mary Langenfeld-USA TODAY Sports

This is a new weekly column for BTPowerhouse that will cover a variety of Big Ten topics that might not deserve a detailed breakdown, but deserve mention. It will be similar to a news roundup with more thoughts and analysis.

So, let’s jump into our Morning Power Bar.

1. Big Ten football is back.

You’d probably have to be living under a rock not to know this by now, but the Big Ten announced a plan to resume fall sports earlier this week. Most notably, the conference detailed a plan for resuming Big Ten football next month:

After the missteps and nonsensical answers from the Big Ten earlier this summer, it was nice to see them finally get a plan together for next month. Let’s keep our fingers crossed everything goes off without any issues.

2. Are we going to see some non-con games after all?

In another positive development this week, multiple Big Ten schools released press releases detailing their efforts to assist in voting efforts this Election Day. In particular, Northwestern and Purdue both detailed plans to cancel requirements for students athletes in the hopes of allowing them to participate in the electoral process.

Northwestern issued the following press release:

EVANSTON, Illinois – Northwestern will have no required athletic activities on Election Day, Tuesday, November 3, Combe Family Vice President for Athletics & Recreation Jim Phillips shared with 529 Wildcats student-athletes today during a virtual dialogue with Atlanta Hawks head coach Lloyd Pierce to kick off the new academic year.

“In conversation with students, coaches and staff throughout the summer, this was a clear, immediate step we could take to empower our student-athletes in raising their voices,” said Phillips. “All our Wildcats can be leaders in the way they use their right to vote, and in how they model civic responsibility for their peers. This is an important way we can make sure nothing stands in their way as we work together to create a better future for all.”

“Dr. Philips, our coaches, and the Big Ten Conference are giving us all the time and resources to ensure we can be educated voters, and that our voices and opinions are heard,” said Northwestern lacrosse graduate student and member of the Wildcats Civic Engagement & Voter Registration Team, Lindsey McKone. “Now it’s in our hands to vote, either in-person or through a mail-in ballot, and contribute in other ways such as volunteering as a poll worker if able.”

The Department of Athletics & Recreation is collaborating with Northwestern’s Center for Civic Engagement to ensure all student-athletes have the resources and support to register to vote. In June, the Big Ten Conference launched a Voter Registration Initiative, a Conference-wide collaboration that encourages student-athletes to take part in the electoral process. Monthly educational programming began in July and will continue through November 3, designed to inform and educate student-athletes on the importance of civic engagement, and how to register to vote and submit a ballot, in person or absentee.

And Purdue issued the following:

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – Purdue University and the Tippecanoe County Board of Elections have announced that Mackey Arena will serve as a vote center for the 2020 Election.

The facility will be open from 11 a.m., to 6 p.m. ET, on Oct. 14, for on-campus early voting and then again from 6 a.m., to 6 p.m., on Nov. 3, for day-of voting.

The vote center, which will consist of 10 voting stations on Oct. 14, and 15 on Nov. 3, will be open to Purdue faculty, staff, students and all visitors. By Indiana State Election Law, all vote centers must be open to the general public. The Mackey Arena location allows for a vote center without bringing visitors to the center of campus.

Voters will enter Mackey Arena from the east entrance on Northwestern avenue and be contained in the Mackey Arena concourse. The vote centers will provide an opportunity for students to exercise their right to vote safely and conveniently on campus to eliminate barriers to travel. Strict adherence to the “Protect Purdue” pledge will be mandated.

Monday, Vice President and Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Mike Bobinski announced a moratorium of athletic activities on Nov. 3, in an effort to remove any barriers that may prevent Purdue student-athletes from making it to the polls and participating in this important part of our democratic process.

The deadline to register for in-person voting on Nov. 3, is Monday, Oct. 5.

3. Harrison Ingram to announce decision.

On the recruiting front, 2021 five-star prospect Harrison Ingram is set to announce his decision on Friday. He is set to decide between Harvard, Howard, Michigan, North Carolina, Purdue and Stanford. The Cardinal are considered the favorites.

We’ll have to wait and see if Ingram decides to play in the Big Ten until later today. He would be a massive boost for the Boilermakers or the Wolverines.

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