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May 14, 2014
49ers' Levi's Stadium to host Pac-12 Championship

LevisStadium.jpg

The Pac-12 has been the only major conference that's held its championship football game in a non-neutral site. That will change this year when the conference's North and South champions meet at Levi's Stadium on Dec. 5. A press conference announcing the new site will be held Thursday at the 49ers' new stadium.

The 69,000-seat stadium is the first NFL venue to be built in California since the 1960s. It will host its first game on Saturday, Aug. 2 when the MLS Earthquakes host the Seattle Sounders. That match will be used as a test run to make sure all of the stadium's operations - from parking to concessions to the video boards - work properly.

The first NFL game will be held Sunday, Aug. 17 when the Broncos play the 49ers in the preseason. Levi's Stadium has its initial regular-season game in Week 2, Sunday, Sept. 14 when the Bears arrive for a prime-time game. The City of Santa Clara asked that the 49ers not host any weekday games in the first year of the stadium. A percentage of the parking spaces that will be used on game days belong to nearby businesses, which ostensibly will be occupied on weekdays. The 49ers will host the Seahawks on Thanksgiving when, of course, those private parking spaces will be available.

The Pac-12 championship will not be the only college game at the new stadium. Cal will host Oregon on Oct. 24, a Friday night game. The Pac-12 and Big Ten conferences also have a six-year deal in place from 2014-2019 to play the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl at Levi's Stadium

The Pac-12 championship game also will be on Friday, although the time has not yet been announced. The 49ers have their bye the week of the Cal game; they are on the road for two straight weeks following the Pac-12 championship. The Pac-12 has been the only major conferences without a neutral site. The SEC plays its championship game in Atlanta, the ACC in Charlotte, and the Big Ten in Indianapolis.

-- Matt Barrows



MATTHEW BARROWS

Matt was born in Blacksburg, Va., and attended the University of Virginia. He graduated in 1995, went to Northwestern for a journalism degree a year later, and got his first job at a South Carolina daily in 1997. He joined The Bee as a Metro reporter in 1999 and started covering the 49ers in 2003. His favorite player of all time is Darrell Green.

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