BYU ready to join Power 5 conference but won't play Sundays

PROVO, Utah -- BYU is eager to leave independence behind and join a Power 5 conference, but it won't change its longstanding policy of not playing on Sundays, athletic director Tom Holmoe said Thursday.

The Mormon school has a written policy against competition on Sunday because of religious reasons, which could require scheduling concessions if BYU moves to one of the big conferences.

"I really would love to see our football play at that level, be playing in a P5 conference," Holmoe said. "I want our players ... in all of our sports to be able to play at the highest level. I don't know [if the policy is a deal-breaker]. That's up to the P5 conferences. But I do know that it's something that we hold very sacred. We have never played on a Sunday and we're not going to play on a Sunday."

Holmoe added the policy was not a major issue when the university was previously in different conferences.

BYU is widely thought to be one of the top candidates if the Big 12 expands from its current 10-team membership, though Holmoe has declined to publicly lobby for a spot.

"It's in our best interest not to be pushing the envelope," Holmoe said. "They're well aware of what we've done. The stats and the records speak for themselves. We're a very, very good football program for over 40 years. We have an excellent athletic tradition outside of football, and educationally this is one of the best schools ever."