BYU football game against Missouri canceled as SEC goes with 10-game, conference-only plan

BYU football game against Missouri canceled as SEC goes with 10-game, conference-only plan

Missouri running back Larry Rountree III against Arkansas during an NCAA college football game, Friday, Nov. 29, 2019 in Little Rock, Ark. The SEC has opted on a conference-only schedule for 2020, which dooms BYU’s scheduled game against Missouri.  | AP Photo/Michael Woods

SALT LAKE CITY — BYU has lost another 2020 game against a Power Five football opponent, if there is ultimately a season.

The SEC announced Thursday it will play a 10-game conference-only slate this fall due to the novel coronavirus. This came minutes after first reported the news.

That cancels BYU’s home game against SEC member Missouri on Oct. 10.

It also negates a possible matchup. first reported there was a “strong possibility” BYU and Alabama could meet in Week 1 to help fill in an open spot on the Cougars’ schedule, and a source told the Deseret News’ Jay Drew the game “is a go” if the SEC’s scheduling agreement included nonconference games.

That, of course, is not the case.

“This new plan for a football schedule is consistent with the educational goals of our universities to allow for the safe and orderly return to campus of their student populations and to provide a healthy learning environment during these unique circumstances presented by the COVID-19 virus,” SEC commissioner Greg Sankey said in a statement. “This new schedule supports the safety measures that are being taken by each of our institutions to ensure the health of our campus communities.”

The Cougars have six open spots on their schedule now, including canceled games against Big Ten (Michigan State, Minnesota) and Pac-12 (Utah, Arizona State and Stanford) opponents.

The SEC will move back the start of its season back to Sept. 26, with the SEC championship game taking place Dec. 19.

This story will be updated.

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