The Oklahoma Sooners on Saturday announced they have moved the season opener against Missouri State to Aug. 29, one week earlier than scheduled.
The NCAA approved a waiver request from both schools to move the game — originally scheduled for Sept. 5 — to allow for scheduling flexibility in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic.
The move now gives the Sooners one week off between each of their first three games, with their second game scheduled for Sept. 12 against Tennessee and the third game scheduled for Sept. 26 at Army.
“If the season is indeed permitted to start as scheduled, the benefit of extra time between games will help our teams manage any variety of possible circumstances that may occur,” Oklahoma athletic director Joe Castiglione said in a statement. “Our original schedule had an open date between the second and third games, so now we will have a span of five weeks to play three games.
“It provides us a more gradual approach to safely manage the conditions of these unprecedented times. We’re thankful to Missouri State for their cooperation during this process and to the NCAA for allowing both teams to start the season a week earlier.”
Despite two other Power 5 conferences making decisions to play only conference games this season, the Big 12 has not yet made any decisions regarding scheduling changes and the league members are still hopeful they can play all 12 games. The NCAA board of governors met Friday to discuss possibilities for fall sports championships but decided to delay any decisions until August.