Pac-12 releases 2020 football schedule

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After months of unknown and preliminary schedules, Cal football can finally rest assured for its upcoming slate. After announcing plans for a Nov. 7 start to the 2020 season last week, the Pac-12 released schedules Saturday morning.

But something was awry for the Bears.

Though Cal typically faces one of its Pac-12 South foes in USC or UCLA, both teams are missing from this year’s lineup. Instead, the Bears are set to take on the ASU Sun Devils out of the South, their sole opponent from the division.

Nonetheless, Cal will open its season at home against Washington on Nov. 7, seeking a repeat victory after overcoming the Huskies 20-19 in last season’s conference opener.

The Big Game will return to Berkeley this fall when all North rivalry games are played in Week 4, and the Bears look to keep the Axe against the Cardinal in a Friday night matchup. This nighttime rivalry bout would typically be fodder for a slew of in-person festivities, but with attendance canceled and COVID-19 still prevalent, the conference is turning to a stronger television lineup.

“Every football game through the first 6 weeks of the season will be televised nationally by a combination of ABC, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, Fox and FS1,” a Pac-12 press release states.

And even if the Bears do not reach the Pac-12 championship game Dec. 18, the conference is planning to match up all teams that weekend regardless.

“The seventh and final week will feature all twelve teams in action highlighted by the Pac-12 Football Championship Game, presented by 76®, on December 18, which this year will take place in a home-hosted format,” the press release reads.

Just one other game will be hosted at Memorial Stadium aside from the two previously mentioned, as Cal will take on Oregon on Dec. 5 to wrap up its home schedule.

Many questions for the upcoming slate are still up in the air. Will the Bears implement cardboard cutouts at home games like their professional counterparts have? Will any Pac-12 teams make the College Football Playoff after just a seven-game season?

As it worked with scheduling, only time will tell.

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Ethan Waters is the sports editor. Contact him at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter @ewate1.