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Pac-12 football season to start in November

Pac-12 football season to start in November
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The Pac-12 college football conference will begin a seven-game season on Nov. 6 after the Big Ten conference’s return despite the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

The conference’s university presidents unanimously voted to withdraw a moratorium on athletics after securing daily testing for athletes, according to The Associated Press. Some state officials in California and Oregon also signed off on the return.

The conference’s men’s and women’s basketball seasons, meanwhile, have secured approval to begin Nov. 25, while the football championship is slated for Dec. 18. On-campus sporting events will be played without fans present, according to the AP.

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Despite the number of conferences resuming athletics, 21 games have been postponed or canceled outright due to coronavirus issues since Aug. 26, including four scheduled for Saturday.

The Pac-12 reached a deal with Quidel, a diagnostic testing firm, earlier in the month for daily antigen tests on all athletes. Medical advisors had said daily testing would likely be necessary for athletics to safely resume when the conference postponed on Aug. 11.

“From the beginning of this crisis, our focus has been on following the science, data and counsel of our public health and infectious disease experts,” Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott said in a statement. “Our agreement with Quidel to provide daily rapid-results testing has been a game-changer in enabling us to move forward with confidence that we can create a safe environment for our student-athletes while giving them the opportunity to pursue their dreams.”