The NCAA football schedule remains in flux, as North Carolina State and Virginia Tech have officially postponed their season-opening game two weeks.
N.C. State announced the schedule change Wednesday, noting the decision to move the game in Blacksburg, Va., from Sept. 12 until Sept. 26, was made in conjunction with the Atlantic Coast Conference. The ACC is among the six FBS conferences intending to move forward with football this fall. Both Virginia Tech and N.C. State will open the season Sept. 19.
"The ACC created a league schedule with flexibility to adjust games if needed,” N.C. State football coach Dave Doeren said in the release. “There are going to be times teams must adjust based on what is best for the health and safety of the players and staffs involved. This move provides our team and staff the time needed to prepare and reacclimate after pausing our practices.”
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According to the North State Journal, N.C. State paused football practice, as well as all other athletic activities, Monday after 22 new positive COVID-19 tests in the athletic department. With the ACC requiring a 10-day quarantine for those that test positive and a 14-day quarantine for those in contact with people that tested positive, N.C. State likely wasn’t going to be prepared to play Sept. 12.
N.C. State announced Wednesday that the university in Raleigh is closing on-campus residences beginning Thursday, unless an exception is granted.
“Over the past few days, our campus community has experienced a quickly rising number of positive cases of COVID-19 in both on- and off-campus housing,” the university’s announcement reads. “We hoped and strived to keep residence halls open and safe to best serve our students. However, the rapid spread and increasing rate of positive cases have made our current situation untenable.
“NC State students who occupy university housing are instructed to schedule a time to move out of on-campus residences, beginning tomorrow, unless an exception is granted. To help ensure physical distancing, move-out will occur over an 11-day period, by appointment, beginning Thursday, Aug. 27, and ending Sunday, Sept. 6.”
247 Sports also reported that N.C. State has suspended all 2020 season tickets for football.
“Although a final decision has not been made in regards to fan attendance, we know there will be a significantly reduced capacity for at least some of our games at Carter-Finley Stadium this Fall,” the letter from N.C. State athletic director Boo Corrigan to season-ticket holders reads. “As proud as we are of our more than 30,000 dedicated, loyal and passionate season ticket holders, it is now unrealistic for us to expect that we would be able to accommodate a crowd of that size for every game this fall. As a result, we have made the difficult decision to suspend season tickets for the 2020 football season.”
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On the other side of the country, the Los Angeles Times is reporting that the University of Southern California has suspended football and men’s water polo workouts until at least Monday after eight athletes between the two teams tested positive Wednesday. The USC, along with the rest of the Pac-12, has already postponed fall sports with the hopes of playing in the spring.
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