The University of Connecticut Department of Athletics on Wednesday announced it was cancelling its football program for the 2020-21 school year because of the coronavirus pandemic.
“After receiving guidance from state and public health officials and consulting with football student-athletes, we’ve decided that we will not compete on the gridiron this season,” UConn’s Director of Athletics David Benedict said. “The safety challenges created by COVID-19 place our football student-athletes at an unacceptable level of risk.”
The team is the first in the Football Bowl Subdivision to cancel its season as a result of the virus, ESPN reports.
“The necessary measures needed to mitigate risk of football student-athletes contracting the coronavirus are not conducive to delivering an optimal experience for our team,” Benedict said. “Ultimately, the student-athletes would rather preserve their year of eligibility with an eye to competing under more typical circumstances during the 2021 season.”
In a press release, the school said that none of its student athletes have so far tested positive for the virus.