The Atlantic Coast Conference announced on Wednesday, July 29 that it will be playing football and all fall Olympic sports this year.
The sports will be played, but not without some significant changes.
In football, the first games will be held the week of Sept. 7-12 and the season will include 10 conference games and one non-conference game. The non-conference game must be played in the home state of the ACC institution and the non-conference opponent must agree to all the medical protocols of the ACC. One of the protocols is that the players and those closely associated with the team be tested every week for COVID-19.
The 11 games will be played over at least 13 weeks with each team having two open dates.
Notre Dame will be included in the 10 game schedule and will be eligible to compete in the ACC Football Championship Game, which will be played either on Dec. 12 or 19 at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte.
All television revenue for the 2020 season, including the Notre Dame home games broadcast by NBC, will be shared equally among all 15 teams and all 15 teams will be part of the ACC’s bowl selection process.
The 2020 ACC football schedule will be released at a later date.
ACC Commissioner John Swofford in the press release said, “Today’s decision was made after months of thoughtful planning by numerous individuals through the conference. 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.”
Swofford and the ACC certainly made adjustments when this pandemic was getting started during the ACC Men’s Basketball Tournament in March. The first games were held just like usual. Then came the announcement on Wednesday, March 11, that the games would be played without fans and then on Thursday, March 12, with teams on the floor warming up for the first game of the day, Swofford made the announcement that the tournament was cancelled.