Big Ten Announces Conference Only Schedule

The Big Ten is the first Power 5 conference to announce an alteration to its football schedule in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Nicole Auerbach of The Athletic reports that the Big Ten is expected to announce a conference-only schedule for the fall, adding that the Pac-12 is expected to follow suit.

At first glance, that doesn’t seem like a devastating blow. While certain marquee matchups like Oregon-Ohio State and Wisconsin-Notre Dame will no longer be in the cards, it’s at least somewhat encouraging that the conference is still trying to move forward with attempts to play in the fall. Indeed, following the Ivy League’s announcement that it would postpone its season to the spring, many believed that other conferences would follow suit.

Of course, the nation’s infection rate is not going down like it was expected to, and today’s announcement simply feels like the first of many changes to come. The remaining P5 conferences are expected to make a tentative decision on their schedules by early August.

As of now, the NFL has no plans to postpone the draft to accommodate college teams that might be playing in the spring, but if more conferences follow the Ivy League’s lead, that might change. Given the massive revenue losses that colleges would experience without a football season, they will continue trying to do everything in their power to play, whether that’s in the fall or the spring.

It is worth noting that the games the Big Ten and other P5 schools play against smaller programs are significant sources of income for the smaller schools, so this will be a tough pill for them to swallow.

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7 comments on “Big Ten Announces Conference Only Schedule

  1. dcahen

    Not sure how many games, but without 3-4 out of conference “cupcake” games, teams like Indiana pretty much have no chance of a winning season. 9 games for example, 6 in division & 3 opposite division, one of which is Purdue, almost always ends up about 3-6 or at best 4-5. 4 losses come every year from Michigan, Michigan St., Ohio St., & Penn St. they are on equal footing for the most part with Purdue & Maryland. They have to hope to land like bad Illinois or Northwestern or Minnesota.

    • IUFB Fan

      I had predicted them going 8-4 this year, losing to OSU, UM, PSU and Wisconsin. They’ve been playing MSU close in recent years, and I think they beat them this year since MSU is adjusting to a new coach. They’ve also been playing PSU pretty close in the last couple years and this year’s matchup is in Bloomington, so that could be a potential upset. I think they’re in decent shape still to have a winning season, but this decision definitely makes it tougher on them.

  2. afsooner02

    Ohio st will cake walk to the final 4 now. Oregon at Eugene was their only semi-tough game this year. No one else in the b10 is anywhere close to them.

  3. crosleyred

    Why should Big 10 schools now be considered for the playoffs since they are only playing nine games? Actions have consequences. NCAA should have a minimum standard of games for consideration if they don’t already.

    • wagner13

      How do you know they won’t still play 12 games within the conference?

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