CSU will start football season Oct. 24

Trey McBride
Standout tight end Trey McBride is one of several talented returning players for the Rams in 2020. CSU's season begins Oct. 24.

There will be football in the fall after all at Colorado State University.

The Mountain West Conference, of which CSU is a member, announced late Thursday, Sept. 24, that the 2020 season had been reinstated and that games would begin Oct. 24. MW leadership had said earlier this year that football games would be pushed to spring.

The announcement was met with great enthusiasm from players, coaches and fans who had been watching teams from other conferences like the Big 12 and Conference USA kick off their seasons earlier this month. It also means that the Steve Addazio era at CSU begins in the fall, not the spring. Addazio was hired in December 2019 to replace former coach Mike Bobo.

Important facts to know about the announcement

Stringent COVID-19 protocols will be in place for all MW teams. Each week, all game participants – players, coaches, staff and support personnel – will have to pass three tests prior to being allowed on the field for games.

Each MW team will play eight games, most likely against conference opponents. So, the cancelled Rocky Mountain Showdown against Colorado probably won’t be resurrected.

CSU will host four games at Canvas Stadium, but right now the plan is to play without fans in the stands. Joe Parker, director of athletics, told season ticket holders in an email Thursday night, “We will continue to work closely with our state, county and university health officials to evaluate if the current no-fan status can change at some point.”

• The Rams don’t yet know their opponent for the opening game Oct. 24, or any other game. The conference is expected to announce the full schedule in the coming days.

Television plans will be announced when the schedule is released. As usual, flagship radio partner, Townsquare Media and Power 102.9 FM, will broadcast all CSU games with Brian Roth (play-by-play) and Mark Driscoll (color commentary).

The Rams immediately resumed practice Friday and can start working out in pads on Tuesday, Sept. 29.

“It’s relatively a short period of time that we have here,” Addazio said. “We have two and a half weeks and a game week, so you really have to be organized. We have to be efficient, and we have to be accurate in what we’re doing here. We have to maximize every day and be really smart and prudent with what we’re trying to get done.”

Other sport seasons remain in 2021

CSU’s other fall sports – volleyball, cross country and soccer – will return in the spring semester, as originally announced by the conference:

  • Volleyball season takes place Jan. 22–April 3
  • Cross country season takes place Jan. 30–March 5
  • Women’s soccer season takes place Feb. 3–April 17

Men’s and women’s basketball can begin playing Nov. 25, 2020, which is near their traditional start times.