College Football

UMass Cancels Fall Football

August 11, 2020

UMass is the latest FBS school to cancel the fall football season due to the COVID-19 pandemic, with the possibility of moving the season to spring.

Athletic director of the FBS independant said in a statement:

"The continuing challenges surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic posed too great of a risk, and we reached the conclusion that attempting to play a season would not have placed the members of our program in the safest situation possible."

According to UMass head coach Walt Bell, last week, the program had only one positive test with more than 600 administered since athletes arrived in July. Players had been living and working out in 10-person groups to limit exposure to the virus.

Just one athlete, WR Zak Simon, opted out of the season.

Football players will remain enrolled full-time – virtually or in-person – adhering to UMass' fall academic calendar reopening plan.

UMass informed athletes of the decision on Tuesday morning. The Minutemen were scheduled to open the season at home on Sept. 12 against Troy. Due to scheduling changes in other conferences, the Minutemen lost four games from their slate.

On Monday, Old Dominion also canceled its fall sports season.

And last Wednesday, UConn became the first FBS program to cancel fall football. 

UMass and UConn were set to open the season against each other on Sept. 3.

The Atlantic 10, which sponsors the rest of UMass’ fall programs, announced earlier this summer that it would not play fall sports in 2020.

The total number of FBS schools opting out of fall football is up to 27.

The Big Ten and the Pac-12 are in the midst of discussions regarding their fall sports, while the SEC and the ACC are preparing adjusted fall schedules.


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