With the Texas State Bobcats’ season slated to start September 5th against SMU, it was announced that the game would be played on ESPN!
The Bobcats will play on ESPNs’ main network, not ESPN+ not ESPN2, Texas State will open the 2020 season in the primetime Saturday afternoon slot on ESPN. With the college football landscape changing by the day, 17 of the Top 25 AP pre-season ranked teams have had their seasons either cancelled or postponed. Two of College Footballs’ “Power 5” conferences, the BIG 10 & PAC 12 decided against playing any NCAA championships this fall, including football. However, the Sun Belt Conference has elected to “follow the SECs’ lead” and intends to play a full season. Texas State has wrapped up fall camp and will begin preparing for their week 1 opponent Southern Methodist University.
The Bobcats are 0-2 all time against the Mustangs; Texas State is hoping for a better result than last seasons’ 47-17 blowout in Dallas. The return game of their home-home series has seen multiple schedule changes. Originally slated for September 5th, the non-conference matchup was moved up to “Week 0” to account for rising COVID-19 concerns. After the NCAA allowed teams to begin play as early as August 29th, the teams submitted requests to both the AAC & Sun Belt Conferences which were approved.
Texas State University Athletic Director Larry Teis announced,
“With the season being permitted to start on August 29 as scheduled, this move will give us extra time between our first two home games to manage any variety of possible circumstances that may occur”.
The move allowed a possible two week quarantine period before I-35 Rival UTSA comes to town. Schedule flexibility is paramount when trying to proceed with a football season in the middle of a global pandemic. Teis later added, “our original schedule did not have any open dates in September. This improves our approach to managing the conditions of these unprecedented times safely.”
American Athletic Conference Commissioner Mike Aresco echoed these statements, however he later alluded to the game being moved back in an interview with The Dallas Morning News, “Lets wait and see how many games, ultimately, if we do play this season, lets see how many games are actually on the 29th and SMU would obviously have to make a decsion.”
On August 10th KXAN announced that “what would’ve been the 1st game of the 2020 College football season” was pushed back to its’ original date. This weeks announcement that the game would be nationally televised finally solidified the time and date for a game that had been scheduled a total of three separate times.
This will be the 2nd nationally televised game of the year for Texas State. The Bobcats’ mens basketball team won a triple-overtime thriller against UTA on ESPN2 before their March Madness bid was cancelled by the pandemic. The university also announced a plan to have limited fan attendance for the game. Mandatory masks & social-distancing rules will be enforced. The University has also moved to an online-only ticket method in an effort to reduce person-to-person contact.
The Texas State Bobcats long awaited return to Jim Wacker Field will air on ESPN at 3:30 pm September 5th!