ROSEMONT, IL – After being the first Power Five conference to cancel football due to COVID-19 on August 11th, the Big Ten Council of Presidents & Chancellors reached a unanimous decision to resume fall football on the weekend of October 23-24, as first reported by the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel.
In an official statement, the conference stated,
“The Big Ten Council of presidents and Chancellors (COP/C) adopted significant medical protocols including daily antigen testing, enhanced cardiac screening and an enhanced data-driven approach when making decisions about practice/competition.
The COP/C voted unanimously to resume the football season starting the weekend of October 23-24, 2020. The decision was based on information presented by the Big Ten Return to Competition Task Force, a working group that was established by the COP/C and Commissioner Kevin Warren to ensure a collaborative and transparent process.”
One of the factors that led to the conference reversing course was being able to secure a form of rapid testing and the conference adopting significant medical protocols including daily antigen testing. With an abbreviated eight-game schedule in eight weeks, it’s unclear if traditional rivalry games will be protected such as Ohio State-Michigan, Wisconsin-Minnesota and Purdue-Indiana. More than likely, teams will play only their division rivals with three cross-sectional matchups to meet the eight game schedule.
The Big Ten Championship Game will be played Dec. 19th at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, one day before the CFP Selection Show on the 20th.