Mid-to-Late November ‘Most Aggressive’ Return Target Date for Pac-12, Sources Says

According to a source involved with the league’s discussion, the Pac-12’s “most aggressive” withdrawal plan is currently targeted for late November.

Earlier this month, Pac-12 announced its partnership with Quid Corporation, a manufacturer of FDA-approved rapid tests that would allow the league to test its student-athletes daily for coronaviruses.

While new testing systems will be on every campus by the end of the month, the league still hopes that a short time will be required to train staff how to use them and ensure proper testing protocols.

Schools in the states of California and Oregon have still not been approved by public health officials to resume contact practices, let alone sports. The president and chancellor of the league will not consider a vote, unless the situation changes. Ideally, the Pac-12 would like its teams to practice for six weeks and physically prepare for the season, the source said.

The source said that to begin testing between now and November, the Pac-12 would have to be approved by public health experts. The late November may be more realistic given the epidemic continuing the Pacific Northwest and the double crisis with wildlife.

The conference announced in August that it was postponing all competitive games through the calendar year, citing the need for a “rapid point of care” as part of its decision.

Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott called the purchase of the new tests a “game-changer” and said the availability of rapid testing would allow the conference to consider resuming competitive activities before 1 January 2021.