By Marty Gordon
After the weekend’s results, Notre Dame and Clemson will meet in the Atlantic Coast Conference championship game that is tentatively set for Saturday, Dec. 19.
Following a recommendation from the conference athletic director football subcommittee, the
ACC’s athletic directors voted to preserve the integrity of the league’s title game by evaluating each of the three teams in contention (Clemson, Miami and Notre Dame) based on a nine-game conference schedule. As a result, Clemson and Notre Dame concluded their regular seasons last weekend. Further, because Notre Dame held all the tiebreakers, the decision meant the Irish clinched a spot in the game. Clemson then clinched its berth with Saturday’s win over Virginia Tech.
Wake Forest, which was scheduled to play Notre Dame on Dec. 12, will now play at Louisville. Florida State will play Duke on Saturday, Dec. 12, and then will travel to Wake Forest on Dec. 19.
The schedule for the remainder of the football season now at least temporarily looks like this:
Thursday, Dec. 10
Pitt at Georgia Tech (previously announced)
Saturday, Dec. 12
Virginia at Virginia Tech (previously announced)
North Carolina at Miami (previously announced)
Duke at Florida State
Wake Forest at Louisville
Saturday, Dec. 19
ACC Football Championship Game, 4 p.m., ABC (previously announced)
Georgia Tech at Miami (previously announced and only if Miami is not in the title game)
Florida State at Wake Forest
In addition, following guidance from the league’s medical advisory group, adjustments to the testing of football teams have been made. Each team will be required to have a polymerise chain reaction (PCR) test administered on Thursday with a result prior to the visiting team traveling to the game locale.
The chief medical officers from each team will confirm results and attest that there is every expectation that the championship game will be played. While the medical advisory group has not identified any evidence of virus transmission during competition, this adjustment will mitigate the chances of unnecessary interactions between team members and outside individuals that are inevitable during travel.
In another twist with negative implications for the ACC, a fourth conference affiliated bowl game has opted out of the 2020 season. The Sun Bowl has been canceled, and the Fenway, Holiday and Pinstripe bowls had previously announced a decision not to play. The Sun Bowl was slated to host an ACC team versus a team from the PAC 12. The latter three bowls also had ACC teams affiliated with their games.