The SEC has officially announced on Thursday that they will also be having a conference-only schedule for the 2020 football season.
The SEC made this decision shortly after the ACC announced on Wednesday that they will play 10 conference games and one non-conference game. The majority of SEC athletic directors voted on Wednesday in a virtual meeting to approve the idea according to Sports Illustrated. SEC school presidents on Thursday also approved the conference-only schedule that the SEC has produced.
The SEC will now join the ACC, Big Ten, and PAC-12 as conferences who have announced a conference-only schedule. The Big-12 remains as the only Power 5 conference to not have announced a conference-only schedule, but will likely follow suit.
Under the SEC’s league plan, the opening kickoff date will be Sept. 26. Also, the SEC Championship Game will be played in Dec. 19 in Atlanta, back two weeks from the original date. As of right now, the two additional games and locations are unclear at the moment.
Tennessee AD Phillip Fulmer released a statement regarding the announcement:
— Trey Wallace (@TreyWallace_) July 30, 2020
According to Paul Finebaum, Tennessee’s two additional games will have the Vols facing Ole Miss in Knoxville and LSU in Baton Rouge.
This would be the first time Ole Miss has visited Knoxville since 2010. This will also be the Vols’ first game in Death Valley since 2010 as well. This means that this will be Lane Kiffin’s first time back in Knoxville as a head coach since leaving the Vols for USC after the 2009 season.
However, SI’s Ross Dellenger tweeted that the SEC will use a different model for the two added conference games.
I was spitballing about the two additional SEC games in 2020.
I'm now told that a separate scheduling model – composed by the league office using strength of schedule – will determine the two additional opponents for 2020. https://t.co/hFWO0Caljp
— Ross Dellenger (@RossDellenger) July 30, 2020
This is the first time that a conference-only schedule has ever been played in the SEC. It is a bit of a bummer that we will not be able to see Tennessee vs. Oklahoma this September. But, with a lot of exciting matchups, this will be a college football season that we will never forget.