Pac-12 to play conference-only football schedule for 2020 season
The Pac-12 is expected to move to a schedule of only conference games for the 2020 college football season.
On Thursday, the Big Ten announced they would be scrapping non-conference games and focusing only on a conference schedule. Such a schedule could theoretically lead to a reduction in travel, give more time before the season begins since non-conference games are usually scheduled early in the season, and could result in more uniformity in testing and health/safety protocol among conference members.
“The health and safety of our student-athletes and all those connected to Pac-12 sports continues to be our number one priority,” said Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott. “Our decisions have and will be guided by science and data, and based upon the trends and indicators over the past days, it has become clear that we need to provide ourselves with maximum flexibility to schedule, and to delay any movement to the next phase of return-to-play activities.”
The Pac-12 is comprised of four California schools (Cal, Stanford, USC, UCLA), two Oregon schools (Oregon and Oregon State), two Arizona schools (Arizona and Arizona State), two Washington schools (Washington and Washington State), as well as Utah and Colorado.
The three other Power 5 conferences have not yet made an announcement. The ACC is expected to announce a decision in late July; SEC athletic directors are set to meet next week; and the Big 12 could follow what the ACC does.
At this point, it would not be a surprise to see many other conferences do the same and go to conference-only schedules.
The Big Ten reportedly angered some other school administrators by making the announcement on Thursday rather than talking with other conferences first.