Look, we're all trying to make the best of the bad situation. The future is completely unwritten, and the entire point right now as we sit here in late April is different ways to model out a complete college football season -- or, at least something resembling a complete college football season -- could be played.
But this idea from Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby may be the wackiest yet. As he told Seth Davis of The Athletic last week:
“I actually think we have a chance to start on time,” Bowlsby said last week. “Whether or not we can get the season done is another matter. When flu season starts again in November and December, you could see that ship sink in a hurry. One of the models we’re looking at is a split season where some games happen in the fall and some happen in the spring.”
I've got a lot of questions. You certainly do, too. Here are some:
-- What standard would be established for a positive number of coronavirus and/or flu cases that mandated a shutdown of the entire Football Bowl Subdivision, FCS, et cetera?
-- What happens if an outbreak is worse in, say, Wisconsin than Arizona, or South Carolina, or Texas?
-- Does anyone believe the SEC, the ACC or the Big 12 would shut down if the Big Ten gets bad?
-- Presumably, the schedule Bowlsby alludes to would made with a break baked in, but what if a therapy develops at some point over the fall? Could the spring games be kicked forward to the fall?
-- Can players who enroll early begin play in January or February?
-- If so, would that count as their freshman season?
-- What would happen to the February signing period and the winter and spring evaluation periods?
There are assuredly dozens of questions I'm not thinking of here, and likely few, if any, have concrete answers right now. That's the problem with this whole situation: no one knows anything.
And yet. If the models are correct, that the coronavirus recedes from view as the temperature heats up before returning with a vengeance in the late fall and winter, this allows for the possibility to play a full schedule with something resembling normalcy; to duck what could be our nation's worst period with the virus; then return after the medical community has had nearly a full year to study and fight the virus.
Look at it this way, if guaranteed the opportunity to start in August and play a full 12, 13, 14-game season ending in March or April, who isn't taking that right now?