Pac-12 to allow football programs to schedule non-conference games

The Pac-12 Conference will allow teams to schedule non-conference games if their original conference opponent is unable to play

The Pac-12 Conference announced Thursday it will allow its football teams to play non-conference games on the 2020 schedule if an originally scheduled conference opponent is unable to compete.

“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 the announcement.

The conference requires a set of guidelines to be met for a non-conference opponent to be scheduled by a Pac-12 program.

The non-conference opponent must follow Pac-12 COVID-19 testing and related protocols for any scheduled game. The newly-scheduled game will be a Pac-12 home game and broadcasted by a Pac-12 television partner. If a Pac-12 opponent becomes available by the end of Thursday during that week, the conference game must be played instead of the non-conference matchup.

Several Pac-12 teams have canceled games this season due to either suffering COVID-19 outbreaks within their own program or because they were scheduled to play a team that returned positive tests.

ASU canceled the second and third games of its season due to multiple players and coaches testing positive for COVID-19, which were supposed to be played at home against Cal (0-1) last weekend and on the road this upcoming weekend against Colorado (2-0).

The next potential available game for ASU (0-1) is against Utah on Nov. 28 in Tempe. Utah has yet to play a game this season due to suffering a COVID-19 outbreak of its own and is the only team in the conference yet to take the field this season.

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