With all the talk of a delayed college football season, there's now at least a chance Ohio State's season starts a bit earlier.
The NCAA has granted schools a "blanket waiver" allowing all teams to begin their seasons on Aug. 29 – known as Week 0 – in order to provide "additional flexibility" for schools as they navigate the scheduling issues caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, according to an email obtained by Yahoo! Sports.
Conferences received the notice Monday evening: "Relief is provided on a one-time basis for the 2020 football season due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic." The edict came from the NCAA Division I Committee for Legislative relief.— Pete Thamel (@PeteThamel) July 28, 2020
Ohio State's official schedule for the 2020 season is still unknown, but is expected to be announced in the very near future and will almost certainly look different than the Big Ten slate originally scheduled.
The Big Ten Conference is moving forward with a conference-only schedule, but games are expected to start immediately at the start of the season – as opposed to after previously-scheduled non-conference games – and the conference is expected to add a 10th conference game for each team and front-load games between divisional opponents.
It's unknown whether the Big Ten will elect to start the season on Aug. 29, like some other teams and conferences, but the Big Ten is already building in multiple bye weeks to each schedule to allow for flexibility if needed; starting a week earlier would add even more flexibility.