BYU AD Tom Holmoe promises answers coming soon regarding 2020 season
After adding a game at Navy to BYU’s schedule on Sept. 7, Tom Holmoe says seating details for home games are on the way, thanks fans for their ‘incredible patience and support’ during COVID-19 pandemic
PROVO — BYU athletic director Tom Holmoe has been a busy man the past few months, even while mostly working at home due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the fact that his third-floor office in the Student Athlete Building is being renovated this summer.
However, Holmoe was still able to add a seventh game to BYU’s 2020 football schedule — on Sept. 7 at Navy — on Thursday and pen a letter to BYU fans assuring them that the Cougars are still planning to have a season.
That’s been in question ever since six games on the Cougars’ original 12-game schedule were canceled in June and July when the Pac-12, the Big Ten and the SEC decided to only play conference games.
In a message he posted on Twitter Thursday afternoon, Holmoe thanked BYU fans for being “incredibly patient and supportive during these unprecedented times.” He said he realizes Cougar Club members, season ticket holders and partners have a lot of questions about the upcoming season.
“An updated schedule is being finalized, along with many other details associated with LaVell Edwards Stadium, including public access, health and safety protocols, ticketing, game operations, etc.,” Holmoe wrote. “Our athletic staff has been working closely with university leaders, government officials, and medical experts to prepare for a variety of potential scenarios for the 2020 season.”
BYU has sent out two surveys to season ticket holders, the first primarily asking if they would attend games during the pandemic, and the second asking what they would be willing to put up with to see Cougar football in 2020.
“We expect to have finalized plans completed soon and will communicate those details with Cougar Nation as quickly as possible,” Holmoe wrote. “In the meantime, we remain excited as we prepare for another season of BYU football.”
Amazingly, BYU and Navy were able to set up the Labor Day game in less than a day, Navy coach Ken Niumatalolo said Thursday in a video conference with reporters after both schools made the announcement that morning. Navy is replacing Utah on BYU’s schedule, while BYU is replacing fellow independent Notre Dame on the Midshipmen schedule.
The Cougars currently have seven opponents lined up for 2020: at Navy (Sept. 7), Utah State (Oct. 2), Houston (Oct. 16), at Northern Illinois (Oct. 24), at Boise State (Nov. 6), San Diego State (Nov. 14) and North Alabama (Nov. 21).
What could happen next?
The Mid-American Conference, to which NIU belongs, will reportedly decide on Saturday whether it will have a season and what its scheduling format will be if it has one.
The Big 12 Conference could provide a couple of games for BYU, although they would have to be games played at the Big 12 team’s stadium. Among the possibilities are Iowa State and Oklahoma, according to a source connected to several Big 12 programs.