Sat, 16 Jan 2021

COVID-19 concerns cause SEC to alter Saturday schedule

Field Level Media
24 Nov 2020, 12:55 GMT+10

The Arkansas at Missouri football game, scheduled for Saturday, was postponed due to COVID-19 concerns, resulting in Vanderbilt taking the Razorbacks' place in Columbia, Mo., against Mizzou that day, the Southeastern Conference announced Monday.

The switch from the Razorbacks to the Commodores was necessitated due to combination of positive tests, contact tracing and subsequent quarantining of individuals within the Arkansas football program, consistent with the SEC's COVID-19 management requirements.

Vanderbilt was slated to play Tennessee on Saturday, but that game also was postponed. The Vanderbilt-Missouri game is a rescheduling of the teams' meeting that was postponed on Oct. 17. Revamping the matchup gives all of the SEC's 14 teams the best chance of playing all 10 games on their schedules, according to the league office.

It's unclear when the Arkansas-Missouri and Tennessee-Vanderbilt games would be held, but the SEC included Dec. 19 as a date that could be used to play games that were postponed during the season. The SEC title game is scheduled for that day, but teams that aren't playing for the championship in Atlanta could finish their regular seasons then. Missouri also had its Nov. 14 game against Georgia postponed due to COVID-19 issues.

"As we continue to adapt to the current realities, it important to remain flexible as we move forward in the final weeks of the season," SEC commissioner Greg Sankey said in a statement. "Contact tracing continues to be the biggest contributing factor to game interruptions. We will continue to manage the remaining weeks of the football schedule to allow for as many games to be played as possible."

It's the second time in three weeks that Tennessee has had a game postponed due to COVID-19. The Volunteers' home game against Texas AM was moved from Nov. 14 to Dec. 12.

--Field Level Media

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