RIT will shutdown all athletics, including hockey, for the season

Two sources confirmed this afternoon that RIT will announce shortly, perhaps in the next hour, that the athletic department will shut down all teams for the entire academic year due to COVID-19.

We broke the news to our premium subscribers about an hour ago.

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Men’s and women’s hockey are the only two Division I sports at the school. The rest of the teams play in the Division III Liberty League. The Liberty League decided to cancel all sports for this season, and the school would not grant an exception for men’s and women’s hockey.

Given that RIT has canceled its season, there’s a strong belief among coaches I spoke to on Monday afternoon that any player who enters the transfer portal would be eligible to play for a new school immediately, and would not have to sit out for a transfer season.

There are four other NCAA Division I hockey schools who play in the Liberty League (Union, RPI, St. Lawrence and Clarkson) but those schools have not announced intentions for the 2020-21 season. They could grant exceptions and still allow their Division I hockey programs to compete while the Division III sports are shut down.