Despite a recent declaration by the Oregon Health Authority that all large gatherings in the state “should be canceled or significantly modified,” the University of Oregon is proceeding forward with the goal of playing all 12 of its regular-season games this season – including its scheduled home game at Autzen Stadium against Ohio State on Sept. 12 – athletic director Rob Mullens told reporters on Friday.
Mullens also said, though, that he believes the “force majeure” clause in Oregon's non-conference game contracts is broad enough to cancel games this season if necessary, according to The Oregonian's James Crepea.
Oregon AD Rob Mullens on Zoom call. Says goal is to play all 12 games. However, if need be, UO athletics believes its "force majeure" clause in noncon game contracts is broad enough to apply. Oregon HAS NOT talked to NDSU or Hawaii about this yet. "We're not there yet."— James Crepea (@JamesCrepea) May 15, 2020
Mullens also told reporters that he has been in contact with Ohio State athletic director Gene Smith but that they have not discussed the possibility of flipping home games, with Ohio State scheduled to host Oregon in 2021.
On a call with #GoDucks AD Rob Mullens - he says Oregon & Ohio State have touched base but they have NOT discussed flipping the sites of the home-and-home— AJ McCord (@AJ_McCord) May 15, 2020
Per the contract between the two schools for the 2020 game at Oregon and 2021 game at Ohio State, the force majeure clause states that “a game shall be canceled if it becomes impossible to play the game” for reasons that include “any order of government, military or public authority; or any prohibitory or injunctive order of any competent judicial or other governmental authority.” Should the force majeure clause apply, “neither party shall be responsible to the other for any loss or damage” and cancellation would not be deemed a breach of contract, but “except as agreed by the parties, no such agreement shall affected the parties' obligations regarding subsequent games.”