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SEC Establishes New Start Dates, Formats For Fall Seasons

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – New start dates and formats for cross country, soccer and volleyball seasons as well as the fall golf and tennis campaigns were revealed by the Southeastern Conference as the league continues to monitor developments related to COVID-19, SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey announced Thursday.

Traditional Fall Sports:
The 2020 SEC men’s and women’s cross-country season consists of a minimum of two and a maximum of three competitions prior to the SEC Championship in Baton Rouge on October 30.  The season will take place between September 11 and October 23 and may include competition against non-conference opponents provided those schools adhere to SEC COVID-19 testing protocols.

The 2020 SEC soccer season consists of an eight-match, conference-only regular season over eight weeks of competition beginning Sept. 18, followed by the SEC Championship, Nov. 13-22, in Orange Beach, Ala.  All 14 schools will compete in the SEC Tournament with each team guaranteed at least two matches

The 2020 SEC volleyball season consists of an eight-match, conference-only schedule over six weeks of competition beginning October 16, with each school competing against four opponents twice in the same weekend on back-to-back days.

The SEC plans to announce fall 2020 soccer and volleyball competition schedules soon.

SEC soccer and volleyball teams will participate in spring competition as well, with details of formats contingent on final decisions by the NCAA to conduct spring championships in those sports.

Cross Country

  *   Season runs September 11-October 23
  *   Seven (7) weeks of competition
  *   Compete in a minimum two (2) events (maximum of three) prior to SEC Championships
  *   No restrictions on opponents; must adhere to SEC Testing protocol the week leading into competition
  *   No more than 10 teams may compete in a single race
  *   Schools may not compete in consecutive weeks

Soccer

  *   Eight-week schedule (September 18-November 8) with one (1) match per week. SEC Tournament contested following eight-week schedule.
  *   Play dates either Friday, Saturday or Sunday based on campus activities & television. Matches may move to Thursday on the fifth weekend of the season for make-up dates.
  *   Regular season includes six (6) divisional opponents and two (2) crossover opponents (4 home/4 away). Regular-season champion based on results of the eight matches prior to SEC Tournament.
  *   14-teams at SEC Tournament – Nov. 13-22. Each team guaranteed at least two (2) matches
  *   SEC soccer teams will participate in spring competition as well, with details of formats contingent on final decisions by the NCAA to conduct spring championships in those sports.

Volleyball

  *   Season runs weekend of October 16-November 27
  *   Six (6) weeks of competition
  *   Compete against four (4) opponents; same opponent twice in the same weekend
  *   Eight (8) total matches

Other Sports Competing in Fall:
For the 2020 fall segment of the men’s and women’s golf and men’s and women’s tennis seasons, SEC teams may compete in up to three team events beginning no earlier than October 1.  SEC golf and tennis teams is limited to events involving only SEC members or non-conference teams from the geographic region of the SEC school.

Golf and Tennis

  *   Teams may compete in up to three team events
  *   Competition can take place no earlier than October 1
  *   Teams are limited to events involving only SEC members or non-conference teams from the school’s geographic region

Fall Competition for Baseball and Softball:
In addition, fall practice activities and intra-squad games are permitted in the sports of baseball and softball, but exhibition games against outside competition is prohibited in the 2020 fall semester.

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