Big Ten football starting Thanksgiving week?

According to Jeff Potrykus of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, a proposal is being discussed for the Big Ten football season to start the week of Thanksgiving. According to the report, this would consist of at least an eight-game conference slate.

Potrykus previously reported for the Journal Sentinel that Big Ten officials were looking at an eight-game schedule to start in early January.

My false hope meter is going all sorts of crazy right now and I’m perfectly fine with that. If this is legitimate, awesome. I hope it happens because it’s a whole lot more doable than a 2021 start and the sooner we can get the Big Ten rolling again the better.

However, this immediately brings up so many questions.

Why not start earlier?

An eight-game schedule that starts Thanksgiving weekend with no bye weeks would take the conference through Jan. 16, five days after the national title game. Why not start an eight-game schedule a month earlier on the weekend of Oct. 24? An eight-game schedule with no bye weeks would give the opportunity or a conference title game on Dec. 19, the night before the College Football Playoff makes its decision.

With this decision, the Big Ten is playing somewhat of a season but takes itself out of the Playoff.


Is this because of new testing?

We’ve seen a bit of a breakthrough in coronavirus testing since the Big Ten shut down its football season 16 days ago.

A cheap, rapid test called SalivaDirect was approved by the FDA on Aug. 15.

An even cheaper, rapider (not underlined, so yes it’s a word) test released by Abbott was announced today.

And we can absolutely not forget about this bombshell of a report that said the University of Arizona identified the coronavirus on campus using wastewater testing.

Yes, we are checking college kids’ poop for coronavirus. This right here is why you do not cancel a college football season on Aug. 11. We’ve got some incredible brains around us.

What about the lawsuit?

Does this have anything to do with the Nebraska player lawsuit against the Big Ten? It sure seems like there’s something the Big Ten doesn’t want people to find out about. We will likely find something at some point through FOIA requests from college football media folks since 13 of the 14 conference schools are public. The Big Ten’s explanations haven’t exactly satisfied the masses, and the conference’s lawyer had this to say.

What does that mean? From my legal background (I have none), it leads me to believe something fishy is going on.

This whole thing is getting weirder and weirder. We just want college football in bulk this fall.

Is that too much to ask?