The Big Ten, Pac-12 and SEC are officially playing conference-only seasons. The ACC is doing something close to that. We don’t yet know what the Big 12 will do — that should come later today — but we do have an idea what the Sun Belt is planning.
According to reports Monday morning from the Austin American-Statesman, Stadium, and ESPN, the Sun Belt is planning to move forward with its 12-game season as scheduled, including all four non-conference games. An announcement could come from league presidents as early as today.
In fact, the word initially broke when Texas State indicated it plans to move up its Week 1 opener against SMU to Week 0, just 26 days from today.
Of course, Sun Belt schools can only play a full schedule at this point in theory.
The conference’s 10 teams have lost a combined 16 non-conference games — 40 percent of the total schedule — due to cancelations by other leagues. Appalachian State and Troy have lost three games to date, while Arkansas State and Louisiana-Monroe lost two; Texas State, on the other hand, hasn’t lost any.
It’s too soon to say if Sun Belt schools will attempt to replace canceled games or just move forward with what they’ve got.
The Group of 5 conferences have been open about waiting for the Power 5 leagues to announce their fall plans before moving forward with their own. With that dust largely settled, the Sun Belt’s decision to remain in the fall could give other Group of 5 leagues the cover to do the same.
As always, stay tuned to The Scoop for the latest.