If you were hoping that the Pac-12 Championship Game was going to be played in the Coliseum this December, you’ll have to give up your dreams. The Pac-12 is slated to officially announce on Thursday that Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara will be the new permanent home of the annual conference title game, in addition to the San Francisco 49ers.
Sitting in the middle of the Pac-12 footprint and the closest NFL-standard facility to the Pac-12 offices –no offense, Oakland Coliseum–, Levi’s Stadium makes a whole lot of sense.
The move will eliminate the home field advantage factor that the Pac-12 had been selling as a novelty, and instead will match the other conferences.
As with most title game venues, Levi’s fits what the Pac-12 needed: a centralized location with state-of-the-art facilities, infrastructure for fans to lodge nearby and mass transit accessibility.
Home venues were a great ploy for attempting to sell out a stadium, but Stanford’s 2012 Pac-12 Championship Game proved that catering to home fans isn’t always a guarantee.
With moving to a neutral site, the game will now garner the look and feel of a big-time bowl game, as it should.
The stadium will seat 69,000 fans and opens this August when the 49ers begin play there following a grand opening soccer match between the San Jose Earthquakes and the Seattle Sounders. Cal and Oregon will play the first college football game there on Friday, October 24th.