The 2020 Big Ten football season will resume on October 23-24, the conference officially announced on Wednesday.
As part of the restart, the Big Ten will “…require student-athletes, coaches, trainers, and other individuals that are on the field for all practices and games to undergo daily antigen testing.”
“Everyone associated with the Big Ten should be very proud of the groundbreaking steps that are now being taken to better protect the health and safety of the student-athletes and surrounding communities,” said Dr. Jim Borchers, Head Team Physician, The Ohio State University and co-chair of the Return to Competition Task Force medical subcommittee.
“The data we are going to collect from testing and the cardiac registry will provide major contributions for all 14 Big Ten institutions as they study COVID-19 and attempt to mitigate the spread of the disease among wider communities.”
In an interview on the Big Ten Network, Wisconsin director of athletics Barry Alvarez said that the revised Big Ten football schedule should be released later this week. The conference will play eight games with no bye weeks between October 23-24 and December 12.
On Saturday, December 19, the conference will stage the Big Ten Football Championship Game, which will match the winners of the East and West divisions. The other 12 teams will also play on Championship Saturday based on their division rankings.
Teams that finish second in each division will play, followed by, third, fourth, fifth, sixth, and seventh being matchup up. How the sites will be determined for those games was not announced.
“Our focus with the Task Force over the last six weeks was to ensure the health and safety of our student-athletes. Our goal has always been to return to competition so all student-athletes can realize their dream of competing in the sports they love,” said Big Ten Commissioner Kevin Warren. “We are incredibly grateful for the collaborative work that our Return to Competition Task Force have accomplished to ensure the health, safety and wellness of student-athletes, coaches and administrators.”