Blog Entry

Pac-12 looking at changing dates of rivalry games

Posted on: November 16, 2011 8:33 pm
Edited on: November 16, 2011 8:35 pm
Posted by Bryan Fischer

2012 will mark the end of several historic rivalries (Texas-Texas A&M and Missouri-Kansas to name a few) due to conference realignment and while the school shuffling won't end any of the Pac-12's longstanding rivalry games, it might force a few of them to move to a different date on the calendar.

According to a report in the San Jose Mercury News, games such as the Civil War between Oregon and Oregon State and the Big Game between Stanford and California could be moved from their traditional late November dates to earlier in the month or even October.

“Given the complexities of the scheduling,” Pac-12 deputy commissioner Kevin Weiberg told Jon Wilner, “we can’t commit to having the rivalry games stay on Thanksgiving week or the weekend before Thanksgiving.”

Obviously the league office is going to try to be as accommodating as possible and will look to minimize the scheduling issues but with the new Pac-12 media deal with ESPN/Fox starting next year and the launch of the Pac-12 Network, it's likely that not every game will be able to stay in its traditional spot on the schedule. The report notes that the number of Saturdays in the month of November will likely determine how many and which games move. Sources told Wilner that the Bay Area game is the most likely to be moved next season.

The situation can’t be avoided. The conference has limited flexibility with the schedule due to several factors:

* The Pac-12 championship game now occupies the first weekend in December, thereby eating up a Saturday previous used by some schools for their 12th regular-season game.

* The Thanksgiving Saturday games involving Stanford (odd years) and USC (even years) against Notre Dame.

* The reluctance on the part of some schools to play rivalry games on Thanksgiving weekend.

One of the best things about football in the conference formerly known as the Pac-10 was that each school had a natural rival in the state that made for a continent travel partner. The move to the Pac-12 will fill the coffers every athletic department but if there's a price to be paid, it's that they might have an earlier than usual rivalry game.

It might be disruptive to a few and upsetting for some fans but looks like something that nobody can do anything about.


Since: Feb 23, 2010
Posted on: November 18, 2011 4:05 pm

Pac-12 looking at changing dates of rivalry games

This is what happens when you fix something that is not broke.  Progress isn't progress if you head in the wrong direction.

Since: Nov 18, 2010
Posted on: November 18, 2011 12:07 am

Pac-12 looking at changing dates of rivalry games

This is not fun!   We have a tradition around Thanksgiving of the normal Turkey Day, and the Civil War game!!!   Even when it was put until the first week of December, it didn't work as well!
Too bad, but I guess money comes before tradition.............and college football has become a big business!
Oh, by the way, Larry Scott is NOT my favorite person.    He is destroying our league!!!

Since: Jun 4, 2009
Posted on: November 17, 2011 5:32 pm

Pac-12 looking at changing dates of rivalry games

Great.  The UCLA vs USC game is at 7:30 pm.  Last year there was a stabbing and violent fight in the parking lot.  A bunch of idiots sat and got drunk the whole day and started fighting because it was a late game.  I like to take my daughter to all of the games except the UCLA SC game because of this reason.

If game time is 1pm or 3pm.  There's less time and less risk of violence with early game times. 

Since: Dec 30, 2007
Posted on: November 17, 2011 5:32 pm

Pac-12 looking at changing dates of rivalry games

As long as they still get to play all of the rivalry games, does the date really matter?

Since: Nov 19, 2006
Posted on: November 17, 2011 9:57 am

Pac-12 looking at changing dates of rivalry games

This has been the case for many years when it comes to the UCLA-USC rivalry.  To USC alum, the UCLA game always takes a back seat to the Notre Dame game.  This is why that on Even Years, USC hosts Notre Dame on the Saturday after Thanksgiving.  If that means moving the UCLA game back a week, so be it.  Stanford goes to South Bend on the 3rd Saturday in October on even numbered years.  In Odd numbered years, the opposite happens, and the Cal-Stanfolrd game is moved back one week.   Lately, games such as Oregon-Oregon State, Washington-Washington State, and Arizona-Arizona State have been moved to weeknights or up a week to get more T.V. exposure.  This coming week Arizona goes to Arizona State and Cal goes to Stanford.  Both of those games have had their start times moved up into the evening.  There is nothing wrong with this.

Since: Nov 26, 2006
Posted on: November 16, 2011 10:24 pm

Pac-12 looking at changing dates of rivalry games

I'm all for it Larry Scott.  Move the Big Game to late October early November.  These late November 730pm start times suck, after drinking all day.  The weather is much nicer in late October pre- daylight saving time, and makes for better tailgaiting... which is 1/2 the fun of a rivalry game.

It would be nice if they could all be scheduled on the same weekend, giving the PAC some extra exposure.


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