The ACC announced its new schedule for the 2020 season Wednesday afternoon and set a date for the resumption of fall athletics as the coronavirus pandemic continues to complicate the return of college sports. The ACC Board of Directors met to discuss the new plans, which involves moving to 10 conference games for football (plus one non-conference game) with no divisions.
With this new schedule, Virginia would face Boston College, Duke, Louisville, North Carolina, and NC State in Charlottesville, and play Clemson, Florida State, Miami, Virginia Tech, and Wake Forest on the road.
“As we look ahead to the fall, the safety of our students, staff and overall campus community continues to be our top priority,” Kent Syverud, Chancellor of Syracuse University and the Chair of the ACC Board of Directors, said in a statement on Wednesday afternoon. “Today’s announcement outlines a specific path for ACC fall sports to return to intercollegiate athletic competition using comprehensive protocols put forward by our ACC Medical Advisory Group. As a league, we understand the need to stay flexible and be prepared to adjust as medical information evolves in conjunction with local and state health guidelines.”
The season would kick off the week of September 7-12, and schools have “at least 13 weeks” to play their 11 games. Each institution has two open dates built in. As mentioned, the Atlantic and Coastal Divisions have been scrapped, with instead the two teams with the best record facing off in the ACC Football Championship game (either December 12 or 19) in Charlotte.
Schools will be responsible for selecting their non-conference opponent, but they have to play in the institution’s home state and must “meet the medical protocol requirements as agreed upon by the ACC.”
Notre Dame is also playing a 10-game ACC schedule, and will be eligible to play in the ACC Football Championship Game. They also will be putting all their NBC television money into the pot, which will join all TV money and will be split evenly among all 15 schools.
“Today’s decision was made after months of thoughtful planning by numerous individuals throughout the conference,” ACC Commissioner John Swofford stated. “The Board’s decision presents a path, if public health guidance allows, to move forward with competition. Our institutions are committed to taking the necessary measures to facilitate the return in a safe and responsible manner. We recognize that we may need to be nimble and make adjustments in the future. We will be as prepared as possible should that need arise.”
Fall sports will begin September 10, and they will play a, “conference schedule that meets the NCAA minimum amount of games: field hockey (6), women’s soccer (6), men’s soccer (6) and volleyball (10).”
Some winter and spring athletes are affected in that the fall competitions for men’s and women’s golf, men’s and women’s tennis, rowing, men’s and women’s lacrosse, softball and baseball have been canceled.
Check out the full release here.