Pac-12 Changes Stance, Allows Non-Conference Football Games

By Kevin Harrish on November 19, 2020 at 2:18 pm
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The Pac-12 will now allow teams to schedule non-conference football games.

The conference announced on Thursday that it will now allow its members the flexibility to schedule non-conference games to replace conference games that cannot be played due to an opposing team's COVID-19 outbreak.

“The Pac-12 is committed to maintaining maximum flexibility to provide our football student-athletes with an opportunity to compete, while continuing to ensure that health and safety remains our number one priority,” Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott said in a release.

A non-conference game may be scheduled under the following criteria, according to the Pac-12.

  • All Pac-12 testing and related protocols must be adhered to by the non-conference opponent;
  • The non-conference game will in all cases be a home game for the Pac-12 team, broadcast by a Pac-12 television partner; and
  • If a Pac-12 opponent becomes available by the end of day Thursday in any given week, the Conference game must be played in lieu of any non-conference game.

The Big Ten does not allow teams to replace games with non-conference opponents. Earlier this season, Nebraska attempted to schedule a non-conference game against Chattanooga following the cancelation of its game against Wisconsin, but the conference shut it down.

The Big Ten will, however, allow Big Ten teams to schedule games against each other to replace canceled games.

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