USC football more likely to play full season after university announces fall schedule

USC football looks more likely with in-person classes announced for the fall. (Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
USC football looks more likely with in-person classes announced for the fall. (Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images) /

With the Trojans announcing in-person classes for the fall semester, USC football looks likely.

If you were hoping for yet another sign of USC football playing out the 2020 season as close to normal as possible, it arrived on Tuesday night.

President Carol Folt announced in an email to students that the USC Fall 2020 semester will include in-person and online classes, beginning on Aug. 17 and ending before Thanksgiving, according to the Daily Trojan.

Combine that message with the Pac-12’s recent approval of athletic activities resuming on campuses this June and you get a very big boost to the prospect of football being played.

CHECK OUT: Pac-12 lays out plan to return for workouts

Not just played, but played on time.

In-person classes are key to allowing USC football to play unrestricted.

Since the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, there was uncertainty around whether or not student-athletes would be allowed to be on campus for their athletic activities if students weren’t allowed back for academic purposes. This puts those fears to bed. Students will be on-campus, socially-distanced, this fall. That group includes student-athletes, who have their own set of social-distancing guidelines for athletic activities.

USC’s decision to move the Fall semester up a week while ending classes at Thanksgiving mirrors plans from other schools across the country. The schedule further supports the idea of the Trojans’ football season beginning as planned on Sept. 5 against Alabama in Arlington, Texas. The only potential hiccup might be a restriction on travel.

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Coaches from Pac-12 programs and beyond have indicated they need six to eight weeks to get their teams in shape for the campaign. Since athletes will be allowed to return to campus in June, the timeline for beginning Fall Camp in late July seems as plausible as ever.

Even if the seasons starts on time, it may not look exactly like normal. There are still locally mandated restrictions on large gatherings that will need to be navigated in order to have fans in the stands.

Still, since the ability to play games at all was in doubt just a month ago, it’s a relief to have more, real optimism pointing towards action in the fall.

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