On Wednesday, the Big Ten announced a plan to return to football before the end of October. Now, the Pac-12, with some things already in place, must follow again.
Back when all of this started and plans were in place for a conference only schedule, both the Big Ten and Pac-12 announced plans on the same day that, at the time, would be the plan moving forward. Fast forward to September.
Last week the Conference of Champions announced they were the first major conference that signed a pact that would provide daily coronavirus testing to student-athletes, a big step in seeing football this fall. With the announcement on Tuesday that the Big Ten would be moving forward with games starting by the end of October, the Pac-12 needs again to follow with an announcement of a return. There are a lot of negatives around the coronavirus pandemic, there are also a lot of documented cases of teams contracting as well as student bodies also dealing with the pandemic.
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Last month, before practices were shut down again, Oregon Head Coach Mario Cristobal said throughout the process that Oregon was clean and had no cases of COVID-19.
The West Coast right now has another problem aside from the pandemic. Fires are ravaging the west coast. (The Holiday Farm fire is 15 miles from my house. We are safe. It is currently 10 percent contained with rain on the way in the coming days.)
Right now, both California and Oregon have restrictions in place that will not allow college football to begin practices. This includes both Oregon and Oregon State. Word came on Tuesday from the Governor’s Office that the state is working on a plan for both schools to return to football.
For Oregon, the discussion is likely for a six to eight game schedule. It is not known if a bowl game is a possibility. For the Big Ten, the schedule ends the day before the College Football Playoff selection as they are looking to possibly see an opportunity to play as much of a ‘regular’ season as they can in 2020.
For the Pac-12, there are still clearly pieces that need to fall into place. The Big Ten Conference may have given them a push to play this fall vs in the spring. Time will tell.