Pac-12 announces transition to a conference-only schedule

Chase Howell

The Pac-12 has officially announced they will be going to a conference-only football schedule for the 2020 season.

They follow the Big Ten in eliminating non-conference football games.

Nicole Auerbach of The Athletic was the first to report the news of the Pac-12 going to a conference-only schedule. 

Football will not be the only sport playing only Pac-12 teams, the announcement indicates all fall sports will be playing in-conference only. 

"The Pac-12 CEO Group announced today that the fall season for several Pac-12 sports, including football, men’s and women’s soccer and women’s volleyball, would schedule Conference-only games," The announcement read. "And that it is delaying the start of mandatory athletic activities, until a series of health and safety indicators, which have recently trended in a negative direction, provided sufficient positive data to enable a move to a second phase of return-to-play activities."

The Colorado Buffaloes were set to open their season in Fort Collins against CSU. It was going to be their first trip to Fort Collins since 1996 and the first-ever Rocky Mountain Showdown at Canvas Stadium. 

2020 will be the first year without the RMS since 1994 and the two schools will not play each other until 2023 for a home-and-home series. 

The Buffs were also set to play Texas A&M and Fresno State as a part of their non-conference schedule. 

It would've been the first matchup between the Aggies and the Buffs since both teams left the Big 12 conference. 

Ironically, the last time Colorado had Fresno State on the schedule, the game was cancelled due to a massive rainstorm and floods in Boulder. They haven't played since 2012, a game that lots of CU fans would like to forget. 

The conference said they will announce the new schedule no later than July 31. 

As long as the conference schedule stays the same, the Buffaloes will open their season against the Oregon Ducks, a college football playoff contender and the consensus pick to win the Pac-12. 

The Buffs will have their work cut out for them with a new coach, new quarterback, limited practice and a conference-only season.