COVID-19 and sports: UB experts available to discuss range of issues

UB football fans enjoying the football game.

Release Date: May 20, 2020

University at Buffalo experts can discuss legal and health issues surrounding the reopening of sports leagues to how the pandemic will change the sports entertainment market forever.

BUFFALO, N.Y. — Will it be cathartic or disconcerting to see professional sports return to empty stadiums and arenas?

How would a shortened season affect the market value of Major League Baseball?

Is it possible to keep teams of athletes, coaches and trainers safe when they work in such close proximity?

All are questions under consideration as the novel coronavirus continues its lengthy grip on daily life.

University at Buffalo experts can discuss these sports-related topics and more, ranging from legal and health issues surrounding the reopening of sports leagues to how the pandemic will change the sports entertainment market forever.

Why we miss sports: A historical perspective

Patrick McDevitt, PhD, associate professor of history, College of Arts and Sciences

McDevitt is an expert on the global history of sports, with an emphasis on Europe and the United States. He can discuss COVID-19’s impact on live sporting events, as well as the void in people’s lives of not being able to watch or attend sporting events.

Reopening sports and the law

Helen “Nellie” Drew, JD, professor of practice in sports law, director of the Center for the Advancement of Sports, School of Law

Drew is a sports law expert who can comment on legal matters related to the reopening of professional and amateur sports. This includes the role of local and state governments, as well as national and international issues like the outsized role Canada could play in reopening baseball and the National Basketball Association.

Drew can also address labor issues, such as union matters and contract negotiations.

When is it safe for sports?

Thomas Russo, MD, professor and chief, Infectious Diseases, Department of Medicine, Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences

Thomas Russo is an infectious disease expert who can discuss when it will be safe for professional and collegiate sports to resume. He can talk about what measures will be needed in order to protect the players and team personnel, as well as fans.  

Sports and the economy

Charles Lindsey, PhD, associate professor of marketing, School of Management

Chuck Lindsey can discuss potential residual or permanent changes to the sports entertainment market long after this the pandemic has passed. He can also discuss how COVID-19 is impacting the leagues, teams, cities and sports marketing partners such as advertisers who rely on sporting events for exposure.

Media Contact Information

Douglas Sitler
Associate Director of National/International Media Relations
Faculty Experts

Tel: 716-645-9069