COVID Outbreaks in PAC-12

The managers of the Pacific-12 Conference have announced that the teams are resuming play, in spite of concerns about players and support staff possibly being infected. The conference has adopted a set of guidelines for resuming play, and has set up a new testing program. In the hope of relieving the concerns of players and their parents, Commissioner Larry Scott recorded a video in which he promised that the Conference was making great efforts to ensure the safety of players and other people involved, but others point out that the Pac-12 loses $5 million for every cancelled game, and wonder if that is the real reason the Conference is resuming play, in spite of a nationwide surge in COVID-19 cases, and multiple cases within the conference. 

Arizona State was scheduled last week to play California, but several players and staff, including Head Coach Herm Edwards, tested positive. Utah was scheduled to play UCLA, and also had to be cancelled, as did Arizona State’s game the following week with Stanford.  

Across the country, fifty-nine games were originally scheduled to be played last week, Week 11 of the season, but fifteen of them – 25% – had to be cancelled. 

The Pac-12 teams had been scheduled to play six games before the teams were chosen to play the conference title game. Now, only four teams – Oregon, Oregon State, USC and UCLA –will be able to have played six games before the Pac-12 championship game 

By: John M. Burt