SEC to have 10-game conference-only schedule; season begins September 26

Ruben Hill
August 1, 2020

"Really, this kind of culminated today in the presidents and chancellors approving a 10-game scheduled that we feel gives us the best chance to have a great season, have football in the fall", Missouri athletic director Jim Sterk said on a Zoom call Thursday afternoon.

College football will face a similar challenge this fall, and Sterk ruled out the idea of a bubble in the sport, outside of conferences moving to the conference-only schedule to unify protocols for testing, quarantining and contact tracing.

While UM President Julio Frenk has repeatedly announced his anticipation that Hurricanes football will take place without fans in 2020, the program's home stadium may be a safer place to welcome spectators than nearly any other stadium in the country.

"We are pleased to have a plan in place for the Southeastern Conference this season".

That could change after assessing how the format plays to fans and other key stakeholders in 2020.

But will other fans be able to see them play at Hard Rock?

As to how many fans will be allowed to attend games hasn't been determined, but after the University of Texas announced it planned to allow 50,000 to attend games Austin health officials intervened. In fact, don't be surprised if the ACC eliminates that "and-1" game when it releases the dates for all of its conference games. "There were veterinary medicine students, there were research students, so there's other students". And that's before the academic year has even started. "It was not hard for us to come to an agreement that if they were coming in, they were bringing their NBC games, they would play the same number of games as everybody else in the league then they would be eligible to play in the ACC football championship game as well as the Orange Bowl if they turned out to be our representative in the Orange Bowl as well and obviously the College Football Playoff".

This week, Rutgers had to suspend all football activities when several players tested positive for the virus. NJ.com reported that a Rutgers campus party might have precipitated the virus outbreak.

Wildhack said the university continues to put together various models for hosting fans in the event NY state lifts its ban on spectators at sporting events. "The situation remains fluid and the pandemic represents a very serious threat". The postponement allows schools to judge the effects, from on-campus students to local coronavirus cases. "We, as SEC member institutions, are continuing to engage in deliberate and informed discussions on planning for the safety of student-athletes, coaches and staff".

Neither the infected staff member nor the sport was identified.

The conference-only move contrasts with the ACC's decision to do a plus-one model, which was made Wednesday. According to privacy laws, the infected person's name may not be shared, unless that person authorizes approval.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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