Florida schools, South Carolina move home games ahead of Ian Pac-12 looking stronger at top after early-season losses CFP expansion talks head toward October after 7-hour meeting

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Gainesville, Florida. Three Sunshine State Universities took steps to save home football games as Hurricane Yan approached.

Florida moved the game against Eastern Washington from Saturday to Sunday. Central Florida did the same in the game against SMU. South Florida moved their Saturday game against East Carolina from Tampa, Florida to Boca Raton.

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Although South Carolina is a safer distance from a major storm, the Gamecocks didn’t want to wait to make a decision about their game against South Carolina State. These schools will now play on Thursday night, two days earlier than previously scheduled and at least a day before Ian arrives in the area.

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Stetson canceled his home game against San Diego scheduled for Saturday in the Pioneer Football League.

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Meanwhile, Florida State No. 23 and Wake Forest No. 22 are keeping a close eye on the storm, expecting to play as planned in Tallahassee.

“We remain confident that we can safely play Saturday’s football game against Wake Forest at the scheduled time,” Former Soviet Union Athletic Director Michael Alford said Wednesday.

Coach Wake Forest Dave Clawson was cautiously optimistic.

“This is one of those deals where you certainly hope the ACC office makes the right decision,” Clawson said. And if they don’t, then we will. We’re not going to fly there and put anyone at risk. … Obviously, this is in the hands of the league and the state of Florida. Let’s hope they make the right decision. But if we feel a danger to our players going there, we won’t go.”

The storm is expected to hit the state’s southwest coast on Wednesday. It blew into western Cuba as a major hurricane on Tuesday, and nothing could stop it from intensifying into a catastrophic Category 4 storm before it makes landfall in Florida, where officials ordered 2.5 million people to be evacuated before it makes landfall. on Wednesday.

Universities across the state closed campuses for a week. But football is big business and a much-needed source of income for many. Playing cross-country in Florida guarantees East Washington $750,000, a significant amount for a school with a sports budget of around $17.5 million.

The state of South Carolina also relies on its “payroll game” from South Carolina.

“There is no perfect plan, but we are trying to do our best for our team at the moment,” South Carolina coach. Shane Beamer said.

The Gamecocks last postponed a game due to weather in 2016, playing their scheduled Saturday game on Sunday.

The NFL’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers moved their football operations to the Miami area on Tuesday in preparation for Sunday’s game against the Kansas City Chiefs.

The Pirates are expected to train at the Dolphins training facility in Miami Gardens starting Wednesday. So far, nothing has changed in the game, which is scheduled for Sunday night at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa.

“We are not discussing any potential (relocation) locations,” the NFL said in a statement Wednesday. “We continue to monitor the storm and are in constant communication with clubs and local authorities. A decision could be made as early as Friday.”

Dolphins play in Cincinnati Thursday night. They have changed their travel plans for Wednesday and are leaving a few hours earlier than originally planned in anticipation of severe weather.

Besides, in Tampa, the Race has other things to worry about besides getting the AL wild card. Opening the three-game streak in Cleveland, players and coaches kept a close eye on the oncoming hurricane. Tampa Bay St. The last time the St. Petersburg area was directly affected by a hurricane was in 1921.

“Watching the news, watching the computer,” said Rays manager Kevin Cash. “I know the Bay Area has been very lucky for many, many years, but just think of everyone out there and hopefully people are properly prepared and wherever they go it doesn’t hit as hard as speculation.”

Meanwhile, the NHL’s Tampa Bay Lightning has postponed pre-season games due to be played at home Wednesday against the Carolinas and Thursday against Nashville.

The NBA’s Orlando Magic canceled Wednesday’s second day of training camp and said their plans for Thursday were unclear. Forecasters say Orlando – in the central part of the state – could face flooding and at least tropical storms as Jan approaches the coast.

With Oregon being choked out by leading Georgia and Utah losing to Florida, it looked like the Pac-12 was headed for another college football playoff miss.

The week before the start of the season, the top two teams in the conference had already failed big early tests.

Fast forward three weeks and it looks like Pac-12 might be in good shape after all.

The Ducks and the Utes took the win with big wins, and the conference leader looks strong with four teams in the top 15 for the first time since 2016.

It’s still early, but Pac-12 is positioning itself to take the team to CFP for the first time since Washington in 2016-17.

Watch how the Pac-12 peak stacks up on the first weekend in October:

SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA

The No. 6 Trojans (4-0, 2-0 Pac-12) seem to have quickly returned to glory in their first season under Lincoln Riley. Former Oklahoma Coach Brought Quarterback Caleb Williams with him to Southern California and they did well in the first four games.

Williams threw for 1,054 yards and threw for nine touchdowns, adding 100 yards and two more scoring shots. USC’s defense was opportunistic, leading the nation with 11 interceptions and tied for the lead with 14 clearances.

The Trojans survived a panic against the bully Oregon State over the weekend and started 4-0 for the first time since 2012. USC is scheduled to play in Utah on October 15 but has avoided Washington and Oregon this season.

UTAH

12th-place Utes opened the season with a heavy road loss at The Swamp in Florida, but won three lopsided games in a row.

Short of a costly interception against the Gators, the quarterback cam growth was sharp, throwing for 954 yards and 10 TDs. Utah (3-1, 1-0) has physical defense and is third in FBS with 132.8 yards per game.

The Cliff also has a veteran team that won the Pac-12 championship last season. Bad news: hard ending Brant Kuittheir lead wide receiver, out for the season with a knee injury.

Utah will play Oregon State this weekend and have tough games against USC and Oregon still on the schedule.

OREGON

The Ducks’ playoff chances plummeted after a 49-3 loss to defending national champion Georgia in the first game.

No. 13 Oregon (3-1, 1-0) bounced back with a decisive victory over a good BYU team and outlasted previously undefeated Washington State 44-41 last week.

The Ducks couldn’t match the Bulldogs in any way – there aren’t many of them – but they’ve averaged 51.6 points in their last three games. Oregon’s biggest weakness is his pass defense. The Ducks allow 72.5% of passes to be completed, the third worst in the country.

Oregon’s biggest test left this season will come in back-to-back games against Washington and Utah.

WASHINGTON

The Huskies quickly changed in their first season under a coach. Kalen DeBoer.

defender Michael Penix Jr. now that he’s healthy, he had an FBS-best tally for 1,388 yards and 12 touchdowns in a single interception. No. 15 Washington (4-0, 1-0) has a solid home win over Michigan State and has 15 sacks this season, including eight against Stanford last week.

On Saturday, the Huskies will play their first road game at undefeated UCLA before facing Oregon on November 12.

University of California at Los Angeles

After winning in Colorado for the first time since 2014 last Saturday, the Bruins (4-0, 1-0 Pac-12) have the longest winning streak since winning their first eight games in 2005.

UCLA had a hard time getting past South Alabama and opened its Pac-12 schedule with a victory over the struggling Buffaloes.

The Bruins will find out how good they are over the next three weeks, a brutal stretch that includes home games against Washington and Utah before heading to Eugene to play the Ducks on October 22.

ROSEMONT, Illinois. On Tuesday, the conference commissioners, who run the college football playoffs, spent nearly seven hours working on expanding the postseason system from four to 12 teams by the 2024 season.

There is still a lot of work to be done.

“We won’t be summarizing this week,” the CFP chief executive said. Bill Hancock said.

The CFP Steering Committee, consisting of 10 conference commissioners and the Notre Dame Athletic Director, is scheduled to meet again at the Big Ten offices for a few hours Wednesday morning. They are going to meet again in person in Dallas on October 20th.

“It will be important,” Hancock said.

Expansion talks have been reopened by university presidents and presidents who oversee the College Football playoffs last month.

By adopting a 12-team plan that has been on the table since the spring of 2021, the presidents pushed panel members to try to implement the new format before the current CFP contract with ESPN expires. This deal ends after the 2025 season.

The expansion from four to 12 in 2024 and 2025 will require rescheduling the semi-finals and championship games, for which dates and locations have already been set, as well as adding four new first round games in mid-December to be played on campus.

Squeezing it all in about a month and working with the NFL for TV is going to be tough.

Hancock said the idea of ​​moving the start of the college football season to a week before Labor Day was discussed to create more room at the end for the playoffs, but was discussed more after the 2025 season.

“I think most people see it as a subject for the future. As a long-term issue, not an urgent one,” Hancock said. “Remember, there are so many details here.”

Hancock said CFP officials spoke to…



Source: collegefootball.nbcsports.com

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