Hawaii Bowl canceled after team pulls out citing COVID-19 issues
The Hawaii Bowl slated for Friday was canceled this week following one of the participant’s announcements that it was pulling out of the game due to COVID-19 issues.
The University of Hawaii made the announcement that it would be pulling out of the game on Thursday. The game was set to take place in Honolulu, according to ESPN.
“The health and safety of our student-athletes is the most important part of this decision,” Hawai’ athletic director David Matlin said in a statement, according to the sports news network.
“The recent surge in COVID-19 cases has forced us to not participate in the game. We are disappointed for our players, coaches, and fans. ESPN and the EasyPost Hawai’i Bowl staff did everything they could for us and we appreciate their valiant effort throughout the week. We want to thank the Memphis Tigers for making the long trip to Hawai’i. We are disappointed we can’t compete on the football field.”
Ryan Silverfield, who coaches the Memphis Tigers, expressed his disappointment in the cancelation of the game, but added that he hopes the Hawaii players have a speedy recovery, ESPN reported.
“I’m upset for our seniors and the rest of the team that battled this season to earn this opportunity,” he reportedly said. We’ve had [a] terrific time here in Hawai’i as a program and we are sad our trip ended this way.”
ESPN also offered a statement thanking the Memphis Tigers and the University of Memphis for its participation.
“While we are disappointed that the bowl will not be played despite considerable efforts from our many stakeholders, sponsors, supporters, and volunteers who worked tirelessly to make this game a reality,” ESPN said. “[W]e thank the University of Memphis program and its fans for making the long trip, and we hope they were able to enjoy the unique experience that this event offers in the Aloha state.”
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