Earlier: It appears that the Big 12 has finally reached a decision on the conference’s 2020 schedule.
After weeks of collaboration, the Big 12 has reportedly decided it will play a 10-game schedule in 2020. Nine of the 10 games will be conference matchups, with the additional one a non-conference contest.
The Big 12 is the first and only conference to play a 10-game schedule that includes nine conference games and one non-conference contest. The Pac-12 and SEC will play a 10-game schedule as well, but all 10 games will be played in-conference. The ACC will play an 11-game schedule with 10 games in-conference and one game out of conference.
The Big Ten announced it will play a conference-only schedule. But it has yet to be determined how many conference games each program will play.
As for the Big 12, it’s finally made a decision on the 2020 schedule, per Nicole Auerbach and Max Olson of The Athletic.
Sources tell me and @max_olson that the Big 12 approved a plan to play 9+1 schedule. Nine league games, one nonconference game.
— Nicole Auerbach 😷 (@NicoleAuerbach) August 4, 2020
As pointed out by Auerbach, each non-conference contest has to be a home game for each Big 12 program. This obviously reduces travel which subsequently reduces the risk of a COVID-19 outbreak.
A nine-game conference schedule was the only possible option for the Big 12 considering there’s just 10 programs within the conference. The additional non-conference game will likely be played against lower-tier opponents.
It’s still unclear when Big 12 football will commence, though the league will release its schedule for each program in coming weeks.
Update: Here is the official announcement from the league.
The Big 12 announces 10-game schedule model – nine conference games and one non-conference game – for 2020 football season.
— Big 12 Conference (@Big12Conference) August 4, 2020
The conference’s 2020 championship game will be played either December 12 or 19.