Reports: Big Ten cancels 2020 college football season; Pac-12 to possibly follow suit

Ryan Kostecka

According to a report by the Detroit Free Press, there will be no college football this fall for the Big Ten conference

The Big Ten presidents voted 12-2 on Sunday night to officially end the fall sports season — only Nebraska and Iowa voted in favor of playing this upcoming season.

Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh, arguably the most well-known coach in the conference, then released a statement expressing his desire to have the college football season.


The cancellation of the season became a real possibility on Saturday when the Mid-American conference announced that it was postponing all fall sports, including football, becoming the first conference to do so. The Big Ten then added fuel to the fire when it announced that it was slowing down its typical progression into full contact with pads on during football practice.

Ironically enough, the Big Ten conference was the first conference to state that it would begin the college football season on Labor Day weekend at the beginning of September, a full 3-4 weeks before the other Power 5 conferences are scheduled to begin playing.

"The decision was to afford us the best possible opportunity to be as flexible as we possibly can," Big Ten commissioner Kevin Warren said. "And and that was one of the reasons why when we decided to go to a ten-game only schedule, a Big-Ten only conference schedule, is that we're hopeful that this builds an opportunity for us to remain as flexible as we possibly can.

"So as you're aware, if something were to happen, where we didn't start on September 5, we have the flexibility to start even on September 12, or the 19th. And because we have both open dates throughout the schedule, and on the back end, we would be able to collapse some of those early dates to a later date. So the big thing for us right now, always is, number one, the health and safety of our student athletes and everyone in our community. But but also is to have as much flexibility as we possibly can."

According to other reports, Warren is in favor of a spring football season so part of cancelling the fall is in hopes of having a uniform decision from the Power conferences to play in the spring of 2021. 

But that isn't exactly what's happening as only the Pac-12 is considering cancelling its college football, with a scheduled call between the league presidents set for Tuesday.

The Pac-12's call on Tuesday is part of its standard and regularly scheduled calls, not ones out of emergency. But the call is sure to discuss the fate of college football and could potentially allow its league to formally vote on postponement.

According to some, college football among the Power 5 conferences is coming down to the the Big Ten/Pac-12 vs. the ACC/Big-12/SEC. 

“It’s gotten to a critical stage,” one conference commissioner told Sports Illustrated Sunday, after a conference call between the heads of the Power 5 conferences. “I think all of us will be meeting with our boards in the coming days. We have work to do that is no fun.”

The SEC is doing everything it can to not cancel and wants to play football this fall — the Big-12 and ACC are sitting back and seeing how this all plays out — the Pac-12 is still in the midst of deciding but leaning towards cancelling — the Big Ten is done.

Only time will tell is there is a season to be played this fall, but as fo right now it's not looking too promising.

"In the next 72 hours college football is going to come to a complete stop,” one industry source told Sports Illustrated.

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