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UConn Huskies Football Season Canceled Over Coronavirus Risks

Connecticut Huskies coach Randy Edsall and his players will not be taking the field this fall. Citing "safety challenges," the school decided to cancel its 2020-21 football season.
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Connecticut Huskies coach Randy Edsall and his players will not be taking the field this fall. Citing "safety challenges," the school decided to cancel its 2020-21 football season.

The University of Connecticut Department of Athletics on Wednesday announced it was canceling 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 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.

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Alana Wise joined WAMU in September 2018 as the 2018-2020 Audion Reporting Fellow for Guns & America. Selected as one of 10 recipients nationwide of the Audion Reporting Fellowship, Alana works in the WAMU newsroom as part of a national reporting project and is spending two years focusing on the impact of guns in the Washington region.
Alana Wise
Alana Wise is a politics reporter on the Washington desk at NPR.