Sun Belt football schedule to include 8 conference games, up to 4 nonleague games

The Sun Belt has approved a football schedule that includes eight league games and up to four nonleague games, set to begin Labor Day weekend and possibly sooner.

The league on Tuesday outlined its plan, saying in a prepared statement, "We believe this timetable will allow for the healthy integration of the entire campus community for each Sun Belt member."

The Sun Belt season will begin during the first week of September, although teams can move nonleague games to Week 0, on Aug. 29. The NCAA last week issued a blanket waiver for FBS teams to play Aug. 29, which provides additional flexibility. Texas State on Monday announced its opening game against SMU had been moved up a week to Aug. 29.

The Sun Belt will maintain normal divisions, and its championship game is set for Dec. 5 but can be moved to another date. The league says it will continue to monitor health trends across its seven-state footprint, including infection rates, hospitalization rates, local health directives and advancements in COVID-19 testing.