BELOIT—The Midwest Conference will continue to move forward with planning for a fall athletic season, but will eliminate all non-conference competition, the league announced Thursday.

The first games for most colleges will begin in late September.

The announcement from the conference came after the league’s Presidents’ Council met on Wednesday.

The MWC also announced its COVID-19 Working Group would continue its efforts toward the development of a common set of criteria for the screening and monitoring of COVID-19 in order to protect the health of student-athletes and college communities when intercollegiate competition resumes.

The MWC presidents said they are in consensus that close monitoring of the COVID-19 landscape is ongoing and fall competition may not occur if public health guidance changes in the coming weeks.

Beloit College Athletic Director Dave DeGeorge has worked alongside other league ADs to provide recommendations for procedures and policies to make fall sports possible. He said maintaining a uniform set of regulations amongst member schools was crucial.

“If one college has a super strict policy and we play someone who doesn’t have that at all we’ve just put not only our players, but our whole campus in jeopardy,” DeGeorge said.

Since maintaining uniform safety guidelines between non-conference foes would be even more difficult, DeGeorge thought a conference-only schedule would likely be the result.

Only one member of the MWC, Grinnell College, has already announced it would not play a fall schedule in any sports due to concerns about the coronavirus.