After losing three nonconference games in the previous four weeks, the Colorado State football team’s fourth and final one is now in limbo.
The Rams, originally set to open their season against CU at Canvas Stadium on Sept. 5, are now scheduled to kick off the 2020 schedule during the fourth week of September. The Mountain West announced Wednesday that the start of all fall sports competition, including Olympic sports, will begin no earlier than the week ending Sept. 26 — a week after CSU’s scheduled home game with Northern Colorado.
“In order to align with newly announced Mountain West schedule guidelines, Colorado State’s football game vs. Northern Colorado must be moved to another date, and we are planning to explore options to play the game during the 2020 season,” a statement from CSU football read. “We will announce a complete schedule as soon as it becomes available.”
MW football teams will play an eight-game conference schedule, with the option to play up to two nonconference games.
CSU already had to scrap games against Power 5 opponents CU, Oregon State and Vanderbilt after those schools’ conferences canceled all 2020 nonconference games due to COVID-19.
The Rams’ lone remaining nonconference game was set for Sept. 19 against UNC. Rams athletic director Joe Parker said earlier this week that game was still on, but the Mountain West’s announcement puts the status of that game in question. Parker has also said the Rams are looking at all options in adding another nonconference opponent.
Scheduling models for the conference football season remain “under consideration,” according to a Mountain West news release. And the conference championship game could now be played on one of three dates — Dec. 5, 12 or 19.
The CSU football team suspended workouts last week after a coronavirus outbreak hit the team and athletics department. School officials on Monday said the athletics program had 16 COVID-19 positives, 11 coming from football. Six positive coronavirus cases were confirmed by the school on the same day, with all coming from within the football team.
Outside of football, women’s soccer and volleyball will play conference-only schedules, with cross country schedules still under review, the conference said. Schedules will be determined in the coming weeks.
Fall competition for golf, tennis, swimming and diving and indoor track and field have all been canceled, but golf and tennis student-athletes will be eligible to compete unattached.
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