The rumblings started yesterday: The Colonial Athletic Association was planning a major announcement that would affect the Kansas Jayhawks.
SOURCES: The CAA conference is expected to announce tomorrow that the league will not be playing football this fall.— Bruce Feldman (@BruceFeldmanCFB) July 16, 2020
The CAA is the home of the New Hampshire Wildcats, the team that was supposed to be the season-opening opponent for KU. While the announcement from the CAA only applied to conference games, Jeff Long announced through a release earlier today that “New Hampshire Director of Athletics Marty Scarano informed us that they will not be playing football this fall.”
Instead, Kansas is now looking for another opponent as they continue “efforts to play a full non-conference and conference football schedule this fall.” Currently, those plans seem to be finding a new opponent, with Southeast Missouri State being speculated as an early possibility.
If KU still thinks there's going to be college football in the fall, it should probably call @SEMOfootball, which also had a Week 1 game canceled and would only need a bus trip. But obviously lots in doubt at the moment.— Jesse Newell (@jessenewell) July 17, 2020
But even if Kansas is able to get a replacement opponent, what are the chances that the public health situation will allow college football to be played as scheduled?
The Big 10 and Pac 12 have already canceled all non-conference games. Meanwhile, the Big 12, SEC and ACC are reportedly working on a plan to preserve their non-conference matchups, but the expectation is that this won’t include a full slate of 12 games this season.
With so much still in flux due to a COVID-19 pandemic that changes every day, the biggest question right now is: Will the season even start on time?
If I had to guess, with Texas and Florida struggling to contain the pandemic right now, it’s going to be hard to get enough of the conference into a position to be able to play at the beginning of the season. With Baylor scheduled as the Week 2 opponent, there is a very real chance that we may need to plan on delays to begin the season.