The Big South Conference is making some minor alterations to its fall sports schedule this year, but plans to begin the football season on time. The league released a statement on its plan on Wednesday afternoon.

The Big South announced that it will not permit any fall competitions to begin any earlier than Sept. 3, 2020. While that does affect some fall sports that had competitions scheduled before that date, Sept. 3 is the scheduled date of the first football game this season.

Essentially, other sports may have to reschedule early-season contests but the start of the football season will not be impacted. Below is the statement released from the Big South Conference:

With a priority for the health and safety of student-athletes and others due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Big South Conference announced today that it will begin fall sport competition on Thursday, Sept. 3.  The decision was made by the league’s Executive Committee in consultation with the Big South Council of Athletics Directors, Chief Executive Officers and medical professionals, and provides each member institution the opportunity to further focus on return to competition protocols and necessary resources to facilitate the resocialization process, while maintaining competitive opportunities for its student-athletes this fall.

The new start date for competition includes all exhibition and non-conference games in the traditional fall sports of women’s and men’s soccer, volleyball, and men’s and women’s cross country, and coincides with the beginning of football season on Sept. 3.  Baseball, men’s and women’s golf, women’s lacrosse, softball and men’s and women’s tennis, which hold their traditional seasons in the spring, will also begin scheduled fall competition activities on or after Sept. 3.

Big South member institutions may continue with any permissible athletics activities, as defined by NCAA regulations, at their own discretion as outlined in their respective return to competition protocols, as well as local and state policies related to individual campus decisions.  Rescheduling of contests will be determined by each institution.

Two FCS conferences have already opted to suspend the fall sports season and re-evaluate the situation in the spring. The Ivy League was the first to make the decision, followed by the SWAC.

Eight football teams compete in the Big South Conference: Campbell, Charleston Southern, Gardner-Webb, Hampton, Kennesaw State, Monmouth, North Alabama and Presbyterian.