Pac-12 Commissioner: If Students Can’t Return To Campus, ‘I Don’t Think We Are Going To Play Football’

May 12, 2020, 12:56 PM | Updated: Jun 3, 2020, 12:21 pm

Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott...

Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)

(Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott said he doesn’t believe college football will be played if students can’t return to campus.

“I don’t believe we’re going to play football if students can’t be brought back safely to campus,” said Scott during an appearance on the Dan Patrick Show.

Universities across the nation closed down campuses in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic for the remainder of the spring semester. No plan of action for fall semesters has been reached.

Pac-12 Commissioner On Possible Scenarios

“We are planning a full season, planning to start on time but it’s so unpredictable,” Scott continued as he mentioned there has been planning among coaches and Pac-12 officials about different scenarios.

One of which USC head coach Clay Helton mentioned – a conference only schedule.

According to Helton, that would mean that all 12 teams will play 11 games this season and not have any games outside of the conference. That means the rivalry game between Utah and BYU would not happen.

Scott confirmed that a scenario like that had been discussed during the appearance.

Pac-12 Student-Athletes Back On Campus?

“Everyone is feeling some optimism at the moment, plan A is for sure starting the season on time and getting a full season,” Scott said. “That’s what we are working towards, but for sure we have discussed other options.”

Scott clarified that students being back on campus may look different for each school.

“The new normal is not going to be the old normal. I think there is going to be hybrid situations … in terms of class size, maybe it’s not all students coming back at once but I do believe student-athletes will be amongst the earliest groups to be allowed to come back,” Scott explained.

Who Decides When College Football Returns?

During the interview, Scott talked a lot about meeting with coaches in the Pac-12 as well as officials from all of the other major conferences. Patrick asked Scott who would have the final say and if it could look different for each school.

Scott said, in the end, local and national health and government authorities will ultimately help guide the decision. He also mentioned the decision to play a season and when to allow fans in the stadiums are different.

“I am spending as much time meeting with our medical experts as I am with our coaches, athletics directors and presidents,” he continued, “One of the few advantages that college has – if you think of the schools in our conference – … we have some of the leading university hospitals and medical schools in the country. We’ve got a world-class medical advisory team.”

Some of the doctors, including infectious disease experts, that are advising the Pac-12 are the same people advising Congress and the president, according to Scott.

“I feel confident that we are going to be at the forefront of the health and safety protocols for our student athletes,” assured Scott.

KSL Sports has put together a tracker with updates from colleges and universities across the nation about plans of action during the pandemic. 

Coronavirus Resources

How Do I Prevent It?

The CDC has some simple recommendations, most of which are the same for preventing other respiratory illnesses or the flu:

  • Avoid close contact with people who may be sick
  • Avoid touching your face
  • Stay home when you are sick
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue and then throw the tissue in the trash
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom, before eating, and after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing. Always wash your hands with soap and water if your hands are visibly dirty.
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.

The CDC recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain (e.g., grocery stores and pharmacies), especially in areas of significant community-based transmission.

How To Get Help

If you’re worried you may have COVID-19, you can contact the Utah Coronavirus Information Line at 1-800-456-7707 to speak to trained healthcare professionals. You can also use telehealth services through your healthcare providers.

Additional Resources

If you see evidence of PRICE GOUGING, the Utah Attorney General’s Office wants you to report it. Common items in question include toilet paper, water, hand sanitizer, certain household cleaners, and even cold medicine and baby formula. Authorities are asking anyone who sees price gouging to report it to the Utah Division of Consumer Protection at 801-530-6601 or 800-721-7233. The division can also be reached by email at

  • Utah Utes Scoreboard

  • Utah Utes Team Leaders

  • Utah Utes Standings


Utah Jazz waive Los Angeles Clippers guard Russell Westbrook...

Chandler Holt

Utah Jazz Officially Waive Guard Russell Westbrook

The Utah Jazz officially waived Russell Westbrook on Saturday, clearing the way for the veteran guard to join his next team via free agency.

2 hours ago

Ashleigh Johnson 2024 Paris Olympics Water Polo Team USA...

Chandler Holt

Ashleigh Johnson Credits Siblings’ Challenges For Shaping Her Olympic Journey

U.S. water polo goalkeeper Ashleigh Johnson grew up with four siblings who constantly challenged her and pushed her to be her best.

2 hours ago

Sunny Choi 2024 Paris Olympics Breaking Breakdancing Team USA...

Chandler Holt

Sunny Choi Ready To Take On Paris With Team USA, Elevate Sport Of Breaking

Sunny Choi has always been a big dreamer and it has led her to Paris with a chance to earn an Olympic medal with Team USA.

3 hours ago

Mike Trout injury rehab assignment Salt Lake Bees...

Chandler Holt

Report: Mike Trout To Carry Out Rehab Assignment With Salt Lake Bees

Los Angeles Angels star Mike Trout is returning from injury and one of the next steps is to get back up to speed with the Salt Lake Bees.

5 hours ago

Tony Finau 2024 British Open...

Chandler Holt

Tony Finau Misses Cut After Dreadful Second Round At British Open

Utah native and PGA Tour golfer Tony Finau fell apart in the second round of the British Open which led to him missing the cut.

1 day ago

Asher Hong 2024 Paris Olympics U.S. Male Gymnastics gymnast...

Chandler Holt

Gymnast Asher Hong Looks To Bring Team USA To Podium In Paris

U.S. gymnast Asher Hong looks to get Team USA back on the podium in his Olympic debut at the 2024 Summer Olympics in Paris.

1 day ago

Sponsored Articles


KSL Sports

Utah Hockey Newsletter: Sign Up Now

Want to get the latest info on Utah's newest sports franchise? Sign up for the Utah Hockey newsletter!


KSL Sports

KSL Sports Newsletter: Sign Up Now

Sign up today for the KSL Sports newsletter. Get the latest Utah sports news delivered to your inbox.


KSL Sports

Jazz Notes Newsletter: Sign Up Now

Sign up today for the Jazz Notes newsletter. Get insider analysis, game recaps and opportunities to win tickets!

3 kids wearing real salt lake jerseys smiling...

Real Salt Lake

6 Reasons You Need to Experience a RSL Matchday

RSL Games are a great way to spend time with your family with fun activities, good food, and traditions you can only experience at the field.

High angle view of the beautiful Rose Bowl Stadium...

KSL Digital Sales

How to Prepare for the 2023 Rose Bowl

Everything you need to know to plan your 2023 Rose Bowl trip in Pasadena, California. This year, the Utes will face Penn State.


KSL Digital Sales

Notable Moments From The Utah Jazz Season… So Far

At the beginning of the season, the Utah Jazz were second to last. Now they rank in the top 10 teams in the Western Conference.

Pac-12 Commissioner: If Students Can’t Return To Campus, ‘I Don’t Think We Are Going To Play Football’