AUSTIN, Texas — With the future of a 2020 college football season looming due to COVID-19, college football players across the nation have banded together, expressing their desire to play.
Numerous top-tier student-athletes tweeted the hashtag #WeWantToPlay as a unifying statement to move forward with the college football season, including Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawerence, Ohio State quarterback Justin Fields and a number of other Division-I football players.
Some Texas Longhorns tweeted out their support for the movement, too.
UT safety Caden Sterns tweeted, "Worked way too hard for the season to be canceled." Sterns later tweeted the same #WeWantToPlay graphic that Lawerence and Fields tweeted.
Defensive back Josh Thomson sent a pair of tweets: "Let the ones who are actually playing make a decision" and "No one should control what we want but us."
Texas Longhorns tight end Jared Wiley tweeted, "Literally poured everything we go into this sport. Grinding by ourselves for months during quarantine, changing our ways of living just so we can ball with our brothers... and y’all are wanting to take it away."
In a media conference call after UT's first practice, head coach Tom Herman said everything went great, and the guys were excited to be back on the field.
"They're football players," Herman said. "They want to play football and today was a very important step into making that happen in 2020."
"The tenor of them was excitement and, I think, some gratitude, really, just to the powers that be for getting us to this place where we can actually jog out on [Denius Fields] and have a two-and-a-half-hour practice and feel really – probably for the first time in the last four or five months – normal," Herman added. "That was, I think, really important for our guys to have a sense of normalcy. Now, it doesn't feel normal having to pull your mask up or wearing a shield on the bottom of your face mask or standing six feet away from guys, but I think, for the most part, our guys are pretty used to that new normal. This was another step in getting us back to something that feels like it was the way things used to be."
Amid the players' Twitter movement came the announcement from the Big Ten: the conference would be canceling its football season in 2020. Texas' conference, the Big 12, had not announced any form of cancellation as of Aug. 10.
For a look at the Texas Longhorns 2020 schedule, click here.