Big Ten Alters Six-Game Rule
The Big Ten has altered its policy that teams must play six conference games in order to participate in the conference championship, and No. 4 Ohio State (5-0) will now face off with No. 14 Northwestern (5-1) to decide the Big Ten champion on Dec. 19, it was announced on Wednesday.
After Ohio State's upcoming rivalry game with Michigan was canceled due to positive COVID-19 cases in the Wolverines' program, Big Ten athletic directors met on Wednesday morning to discuss whether the conference should abandon its six-game policy, considering the Buckeyes were only able to play five games this season.
The decision had to be approved by not only the ADs, but senior women administrators, as well as university presidents and chancellors.
The rationale for removing the six-game policy leaned heavily on the idea that Ohio State would have been in the Big Ten title game regardless of whether it lost to Michigan or not.
With a win in the Big Ten title game, Ohio State's chances of being included in the College Football Playoff remain high.
Other Big Ten teams are also seeing games cancelled due to COVID-19 concerns, as both No. 12 Indiana and Purdue are dealing with outbreaks within their programs.
On Tuesday, Purdue announced it had canceled its practice due to a number of positive COVID-19 tests, and IU also announced it had paused all team activities for the same reason.
With that, the Old Oaken Bucket game will not be played for the first time in over 100 years.
Stay tuned for more updates.