However, the language inside a key Pac-12 document at least deems the topic worth exploring.
Buried toward the bottom of the fifth page are suspension/discontinuation considerations. The fourth bullet point of that subsection reads: “Local public health officials deem that hospital resources are in danger of being overwhelmed.”
One Pac-12 source told The Salt Lake Tribune that there is no specific timeline or deadline to decide whether to cancel or move a game to a different ite. The league will be monitoring local situations and potential impacts to games, with scheduling changes to be made as necessary.
Reasonable thinking says that if a Pac-12 game is played on a Saturday, the visiting team is going to travel Friday. Any decision on calling a game off would have to be made before the visiting team gets on an airplane, whether that be during the day Thursday or even Friday morning.
On Tuesday, Utah’s Department of Health reported 1,145 new cases, the 14th day in a row of at least a thousand, and a seven-day positive-test percentage of 17.4%.
Starting QB is set but will remain a mystery
“It was pretty much what you’d expect out of mature, professional-type guys that handle their business the right way,” Whittingham said. “Disappointment, but acceptance, a lot of unselfishness and willingness to do whatever they can to help the team. I think they handled it exactly how they would have hoped, and we had a great practice yesterday. There was nobody sulking or hanging their head. Everybody was just working hard and moving forward.”
Whether it is South Carolina graduate transfer Jake Bentley or redshirt sophomore Cameron Rising, the starter now has, including Wednesday, 10 days to continue working with the first-team offense ahead of the opener. Whittingham has consistently praised the offense, which he has said is well-ahead of a young, inexperienced defense that is looking to replace nine starters.
Locker-room situation coming into focus
The plan as of now is for Utah to get dressed and do a lot of pregame activity both at the Eccles Football Center and at the indoor practice facility at Eccles Field House.
Everyone will then hop on buses for the half-mile ride from the Eccles Football Center to Rice-Eccles Stadium, with the Utes expected in the stadium about 50 minutes before kickoff as opposed to the normal two hours.
At the stadium, short of an actual locker room, Whittingham indicated they will have “a space” for pregame and halftime.
“It’ll work,” Whittingham said. “It’s not going to be a huge problem, it’s just different. Football players are creatures of habit. They like routine, they like structure and so this will be a lot different than what we’re used to.”
Whittingham said the team will go through a dry run of the game-day process in the coming days.