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Rose Bowl Officials Wait for Word on College Football Season

Pac-12 officials meeting on Tuesday

Published on Monday, August 10, 2020 | 1:30 pm

According to several reports, the fate of the UCLA football season could be decided on Tuesday.

Presidents from the ACC, Big 12, Big Ten, Pac-12 and SEC athletic conferences — also known as the Power 5 — held an emergency meeting Sunday amid growing concerns that fall sports cannot be played due to the coronavirus pandemic.

UCLA, which plays in the Rose Bowl, is in the Pac-12. The Bruins are scheduled to play crosstown rival USC in the iconic stadium on Sept. 26.

USC and UCLA have already released conference-only schedules for fall football.

On Monday, Rose Bowl General Manager Darryl Dunn said nothing had been finalized yet.

The lack of events has devastated Rose Bowl revenue and left RBOC officials scrambling to come up with ways to make money.

According to a staff report in a Finance Committee agenda report released two weeks ago, the Rose Bowl Operating Committee is expecting a 25 percent reduction in fans due to social distancing guidelines, if fans are allowed inside the stadium at all.

That report said there would be a Rose Bowl Game if the season started in the spring. In those documents, officials with the Rose Bowl Operating Co., which runs the stadium, said college football was vital.

“Playing college football this fiscal year is critical for the RBOC,” officials said in the report.

UCLA is one of the Rose Bowl’s primary tenants and has made millions of dollars for the stadium.

Presidents and chancellors of Pac-12 schools are scheduled to meet Tuesday.

According to ESPN, no major decisions were made Sunday night, but multiple sources in several Power 5 conferences told ESPN the commissioners discussed plans for canceling or postponing fall sports.

Several sources also told the sports network that Big Ten presidents are ready to postpone the season until spring, and they wanted to gauge if commissioners, as well as university presidents and chancellors from the other Power 5 conferences will fall in line with them.

On Monday, one ESPN host reported that the Big Ten has already decided to cancel its college football season and the Pac-12 would announce that its season had been canceled.

Reporters at the Detroit Free Press also reported that they had been told that Michigan State, which in the Big Ten, would not be playing.

Several high-profile players from Power 5 schools, including USC quarterback Kedon Slovis, released a joint statement Sunday expressing their desire to play this fall and shared items they felt were needed to ensure a safe environment for student-athletes.

Pro athletics has been able to resume games largely because professional athletes have bargained for safety protocols and the ability to opt-out of games for safety’s sake with no punishment through their unions.

College football athletes are not considered professional athletes and have no negotiating power.

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