2001 Football Civil War Moved to Dec. 1

Jan. 18, 2001

EUGENE - The University of Oregon and Oregon State have agreed to move their 2001 regular-season football finale to Dec. 1 in order to become a major part of ABC Sports' 'Championship Saturday' lineup, according to an announcement Thursday by the network's Senior Vice President of Programming, Loren Matthews.

The 105th edition of the Civil War, which originally was scheduled to take place on Nov. 17, will be moved back two weeks in order to be televised nationally by ABC-TV in between the Miami-Virginia Tech game and the Dr. Pepper Big 12 Conference Championship.

Kickoff for the Civil War, brought to you by your Northwest Dodge Dealers, is tentatively scheduled for 1:30 p.m. (PST) in Autzen Stadium.

In addition to the exposure assured to the two programs, who both completed the 2000 season sharing the Pacific-10 Conference title with their best records in the schools' histories, the national television appearance is expected to generate $600,000 for each program. That compares to a $270,000 payout the schools would receive for a regional ABC appearance.

Although ABC televised this year's 23-13 Oregon State win in Corvallis on a regional basis and Fox Sports Net carried the game to a national cable audience in 1998 and 1999, this will mark the first time one of the nation's longest running rivalries will be aired nationally on a non-cable network telecast since 1956. It also will mark the Ducks' first national network appearance during the regular season in 45 years.

Only six other Division I rivalries in the country have taken place more frequently than the Oregon-Oregon State series, which originated in 1894 and has remained uninterrupted since 1912, with the exception of two years during World War II (1943-44).

'It's exciting to have the opportunity for this game to be showcased throughout the entire country and in a time slot that should generate a lot of attention,' Oregon head coach Mike Bellotti said. 'But it also will allow us an extra week of preparation and time to get everyone healthy at the end of the season. I couldn't be more pleased with the network's decision.'

Oregon State ended the year ranked fourth in the country in the final Associated Press poll with an 11-1 record while Oregon was ranked seventh with a 10-2 mark, signifying the first time the two schools have ever finished the year ranked in the top 10 at the same time.

The day's ABC lineup is expected to start off with a battle between the Nokia Sugar Bowl champion Hurricanes and Gator Bowl champion Virginia Tech at 10 a.m. (PST) in Blacksburg, Va., followed by the two Oregon schools meeting in Eugene and the Big 12 Championship from Texas Stadium in Irving, Texas, at 5 p.m.

The contest will represent the first time the Ducks have enjoyed an open date prior to the Civil War since 1978, and marks the latest the two teams have faced one another since doing so on Dec. 1 in 1945.

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