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Pac-12 Targeting First Weekend In November To Start Football Season

Utah Utes offensive lineman Nick Ford (55) before the Pac-12 Football Championship Game between the Oregon Ducks and the Utah Utes at Levi's Stadium on December 6, 2019 in Santa Clara, CA. (Photo by Cody Glenn/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY, UtahΒ – KSLSports.com has learned that the Pac-12 has targeted November 7th as it’s preferred start date, according to a source close to the situation. However, significant hurdles still remain for the conference to stay on track for that date.

The majority of the conference agreed that they need six weeks to best prepare for a season, however, the schools in California requested eight weeks to prepare. California based schools have not been able to practice in groups larger than 12 because of COVID-19 guidelines.

The University of Utah has not had to deal with such restrictions. The Utah football team has been working out and staying in shape, with face coverings and social distancing, since the Pac-12 announced the postponement of 2020 fall sports on August 11.

Furthermore, schools such as Stanford do not have their players on campus. Rather, the Stanford Cardinal will be required to bring the playing group back to campus from all around the country. A five-day quarantine for the players who traveled would be required before the group can begin its 2020 fall season preparations.

Over the past few days, the dominoes have started to fall in favor of the conference and the probability is growing that the Pac-12 will play in 2020.

One of the biggest factors behind the conference getting its season off the ground is the new testing system and partnership the conference has created with San Diego based Quidel Corporation.

Quidel has designed a COVID-19 testing system that warrants results within a 15-minute span, the systems are expected to be on every Pac-12 campus by the end of September.

The Pac-12 coaches are anticipated to meet today at noon to further discuss the likelihood of playing a season in 2020.