So Governor Murphy gave in to significant pressure and announced Tuesday that colleges, high schools and middle schools in New Jersey can hold outdoor graduation ceremonies beginning July 6 as long as they comply with social distancing and other safety protocols.

The state is expected to release additional guidelines as early as today including the number of people who can attend.  Many schools have already committed to virtual graduations and are expected to keep things that way in part because Murphy’s start date is about three weeks after most have scheduled those ceremonies.  In some cases schools had to make a financial commitment to hold graduations in a virtual manner.

By the way the governor also announced yesterday that pro sports teams in New Jersey, including the Giants and Jets, can return to training and even competition.

That also applies to soccer’s Red Bulls and it would have for the Devils as well but the NHL announced Tuesday its regular season is over and they plan to go right into a 24-team playoff plan structure which leaves New Jersey on the outside.

Don’t expect baseball players and owners to agree anytime soon on a plan to restart the season which now appears to be in major jeopardy.  MLB submitted a new compensation plan to the Players Association and it’s one that for many is a non-starter.

Those making less money would keep a higher percentage of their salaries but that would not be the case with the highest-paid players.  For example Yankees pitcher Gerrit Cole’s $36 million contract would be reduced to less than $9 million under the proposal.  The two sides simply don’t trust one another and it’s not a stretch to say there may not be a baseball season in 2020.

Monmouth University football coach Kevin Callahan remains optimistic there will be a college football season in the fall.  The Hawks would normally get players back on campus in mid-July to get ready for the season but even if that’s delayed Callahan believes they could still start as scheduled.

Monmouth is hoping to open against Rutgers on September 5th, the first-ever meeting between the two New Jersey schools.  You can view a full interview I did with Callahan at shoresportsnetwork.com

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