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SEC starts on Sept. 26

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — The powerhouse Southeastern Conference reconfigured its schedule Thursday to include only league games in 2020, a pandemic-forced decision that pushes major college football closer to a siloed regular season in which none of the power conferences cross paths.

The SEC’s university presidents agreed on a 10-game schedule that eliminates all nonconference opponents and begins Sept. 26. The SEC championship game, originally scheduled for Dec. 5, will be pushed back to Dec. 19, 13 days before the College Football Playoff semifinals are scheduled to be played on New Year’s Day.

While some scheduling plans are still to be sorted out among Power Five conferences, it is growing more likely this season’s playoff teams — if there is a playoff — will be selected without the aid of nonconference games involving Power Five teams.

Each SEC team will have a midseason off week in this odd, truncated season and Dec. 12 will be an off week for the entire conference. The delayed start creates 12 weeks to get in 10 games and determine participants for the SEC title game.

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