More games put off as MWC plans to meet
Another opponent bails on Houston
On Thursday, presidents’ meetings will be held in both the Pac-12 and Mountain West, of which New Mexico is a member, with both conferences eyeing late October starts to the football season after initially postponing all fall sports.
Meanwhile on Wednesday, Houston had an opponent postpone or cancel a game for the fifth time this season, this time North Texas. The Cougars are still waiting to play their season opener as COVID-19 issues wiped out three more major college football games.
The latest team to bail on Houston was North Texas, which said it would not be able to field a team for Saturday’s road game after four positive tests this week. The school didn’t specify an affected position group or how many additional people needed to self isolate because of contact tracing.
Tulsa’s scheduled game at Arkansas State this week was also postponed. Arkansas State said only that it was unable to assemble a two-deep depth chart at an unspecified position.
South Florida at Florida Atlantic was the third game of the day postponed, with USF pulling the plug. The school initially said it was pausing football activities to do testing and contact tracing after finding out that its previous opponent, Notre Dame, was dealing with a COVID-19 outbreak.
Like Houston, Florida Atlantic has not yet played. It had to postpone an earlier game against Georgia Southern because of its own outbreak. Houston’s latest frustration was summed up nicely by wide receiver Keith Corbin on Twitter: “Can we just play one game man?”
Earlier Wednesday, the Atlantic Coast Conference rescheduled Notre Dame at Wake Forest for Dec. 12. The seventh-ranked Fighting Irish had 13 players in isolation with COVID-19 and 10 more in quarantine due to contact tracing.
Wake Forest has moved its game against Campbell to Oct. 3. Notre Dame is going to keep its open date on Oct. 3, giving the Irish more time to get their players back.
As the number of games involving FBS teams postponed or canceled since Aug. 26 reached 21, another conference is taking steps toward trying to play fall football.
Mid-American Conference university presidents are scheduled to meet Friday with playing in the fall on the agenda, a person familiar with the meeting told The Associated Press on condition of anonymity. The MAC was the first FBS conference to postpone fall football in early August because of concerns about playing through the pandemic.
All this comes as the Southeastern Conference prepares to kick off its season with seven games on Saturday. SEC teams might play twice before Houston gets in its first game. The Cougars’ next scheduled game is Oct. 8 at home against Tulane.
Houston was scheduled to play last Friday at Memphis, but the American Athletic Conference put off that game a week in advance because of a virus outbreak among the Tigers. It was replaced by a hastily arranged reunion with former Southwest Conference rival Baylor last Saturday, but the Bears had to cancel because of multiple positive tests.
The Cougars were originally supposed to open Sept. 3 against Rice, but that game was postponed in August. That was after a Sept. 12 game at Washington State was canceled when the Pac-12 originally decided not to play this fall.