The college football world is anxiously awaiting the season kickoff. In just over two weeks, it appears months of questions as to whether a season can happen will be answered. However, that’s not without debate. The Big 10, PAC 12, and others have decided to opt for a spring football season. In a season of divide, the stubborn six are doing their best to give the nation a college football season.
A College Football Nation Divided
We’ve known for quite a while that pulling off a sports season without a bubble would be tough. With students coming into the fold, the challenges would mount. However, the Big 10 and the PAC 12 got ahead of it as they postponed the 2020 fall football season. The Mid-American Conference (MAC) and the Mountain West Conference also looked to delay its season. Many conferences sited long term cardiac health, inability to keep kids safe, and the general uncertainty of the pandemic as reasons to re-evaluate in the winter.
The postponement means a college football season with many blue-blood programs. Ohio State, Penn State, Michigan, USC, UCLA, and Boise State will hope to get a lifeline in the winter. A season without “The Game,” a Penn State whiteout, or the blue turf seems unfamiliar. But, as a nation, we are in deep unchartered water. However, if these teams aren’t able to compete in the winter or spring can they overcome a relative 2020 College Football Death Penalty?
In what many are calling, the stubborn six, we have six conferences that are moving forward with a college football season. But, perhaps it was the Big 12 that ultimately saved the prospect of a season. With mounting pressure from the Big 10 and PAC 12 to postpone, the Big 12 joined their brothers from the SEC and ACC to move forward with a season.
The Stubborn Six
The Big 12, ACC, SEC, Sun Belt, AAC, and the Conference USA are moving towards a season. That certainly has been met with opposition across the country. And, what many have feared has happened at a few schools. Clusters of positive tests at Notre Dame, North Carolina, North Carolina State, and Appalachian State have been met with criticism. Some schools have decided to move many of its classes online. But, we’ve also seen that football players as a whole are not behaving the same way as the student population. There has been some teams pause fall camp due to positive tests. But, it has not occurred at the same rate as some of the college students. This puts more stock in the prevailing thought that kids are safer in the team environment.
Notre Dame is potentially a school that could tip the scales. Fighting Irish Athletic Director Jack Swarbick said earlier that if kids aren’t on campus then football shouldn’t be played. Currently, Notre Dame has moved all of their classes remote for two weeks to try and curb the spread. In what could be a first, could Notre Dame bow out of the season and cause a ripple effect for the college football world? Should we be fortunate enough to complete a season, a new first for the state of Indiana could be upon us. One of the most interesting parts of a college football season is the betting lines and placing wagers on the top games. Now, the state of Indiana is live with Indiana FanDuel Sportsbook.
The Last Conclusion
The stubborn six seem to be confident about moving forward. But, why is that? Well, they are putting some outstanding plans in place through their protocols to be as risk-averse as possible. The Big 12, SEC, and Conference USA will test their players three times a week during the season as well as perform versions of cardiac testing to keep the kids as safe as they possibly can. Whether the season finishes will be a mystery, but all signs point the season kicking off in about two weeks. Make no mistake, the 2020 college football season will be a year that any of us will soon forget.