2020 Dayton at Southeast Missouri football game canceled

By Kevin Kelley -

The 2020 Dayton Flyers at the Southeast Missouri Redhawks football game has been canceled, both schools announced on Monday.

The game, scheduled for Thursday Sept. 3 at Southeast’s Houck Stadium in Cape Girardeau, Mo., was canceled due to the ongoing coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.

Dayton and Southeast Missouri’s scheduled meeting in 2020 was the first of a home-and-home series that concludes at Dayton on Sept. 9, 2023. According to the release, the two schools will work to reschedule the 2020 contest for a future season. Additionally, Southeast Missouri plans to search for another opponent to fill the vacancy in their 2020 schedule.

“I feel badly for the players of both teams,” Dayton Vice-President and Director of Athletics Neil Sullivan said. “I know our guys are very disappointed. But the health and safety for our campus and our student-athletes has to be the priority. With the challenges related to COVID-19, we simply would not have time for our football team to be physically prepared with the proper exercise and heat acclimatization needed prior to our first game.

“I would like to thank SEMO, their athletic director Brady Barke and coach Matukewicz for their cooperation, dialogue and understanding over the last few months in coming to this decision.”

Barring any additional cancellations or changes, Dayton’s season-opener will be played at Georgetown on Saturday, Sept. 12. Their home-opener is currently slated for Saturday, Sept. 19 against Robert Morris.

Southeast Missouri will likely try to fill their season-opener with a home opponent. Their following two contests are both on the road, at Ole Miss on Sept. 12 and at Southern Illinois on Sept. 19.

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You have to wonder the thinking. So the football game won’t be played. How does that help? Do the players coaches etc just disappear? They have to be somewhere.