Big Ten changes to include conference matchups on Labor Day weekend

The Big Ten isn't going to wait to dive head-first into its league schedule in future years. The conference released 2020 and 2021 football season schedules Tuesday afternoon, which included Big Ten battles on Labor Day weekend.

The 2020 season will begin with three conference matchups: Indiana at Wisconsin, Northwestern at Michigan State and Purdue at Nebraska. To kick off the 2021 slate, four East Division teams will visit West Division sites: Indiana at Iowa, Michigan State at Northwestern, Ohio State at Minnesota and Penn State at Wisconsin.

The Big Ten started the current football calendar with a game between Ohio State and Indiana on a Thursday night. League officials indicated that the 2020 and 2021 league openers might be spread out among days other than Saturday.

The very last week of the year will also get a shake-up. Iowa, Nebraska, Wisconsin and Minnesota will swap their usual dance partners for their season finales. Iowa will face Wisconsin and Minnesota will face Nebraska to close out those years.

Nebraska and Iowa have met every year on the Friday after Thanksgiving since the Cornhuskers joined the Big Ten in 2011. It's possible that the Nebraska-Minnesota game could be played on the Friday in those years, according to a Big Ten official.