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CFP Semifinal at Rose Bowl to Be Relocated to Cowboys' AT&T Stadium in Arlington

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistDecember 20, 2020

People walk the turf before the first half of the NFC wild-card NFL football game between the Dallas Cowboys and the Seattle Seahawks, in Arlington, Texas, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019. (AP Photo/Roger Steinman)
Roger Steinman/Associated Press

Because of COVID-19-related issues in the state of California, the College Football Playoff Semifinal at the Rose Bowl Stadium will now be played at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, on New Year's Day.

The Pasadena Tournament of Roses confirmed the move in an official statement released Saturday.

Bill Hancock, executive director of the CFP, spoke about the move in the official statement: "We are very grateful to Rose Bowl officials and the City of Pasadena. They have worked hard to listen to the concerns of the CFP, the teams that might have played there, and their state and government officials."

The Associated Press (h/t ESPN) reported earlier in the day that there was "serious doubt" that the semifinal game would remain in Pasadena, California, after the state denied a special exemption request to allow a small group of fans into the stadium.

California hasn't allowed fans to attend any sporting events because of the pandemic. The San Francisco 49ers, who are based in Santa Clara County, have had to move their home to State Farm Stadium in Arizona because of restrictions in the county.

AT&T Stadium, home of the Dallas Cowboys, has been having thousands of fans attend NFL games throughout the season. Their average home attendance of 26,466 fans is nearly 11,000 more than any other team in the league, per ESPN.

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The 2021 Rose Bowl, which may go by a different name due to licensing, will serve as the first semifinal game in the CFP. This will mark the first time since 1942 that "The Granddaddy of Them All" won't be played in Pasadena.

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