The ongoing novel coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic continues to take a toll on the college football season.
The pandemic has already forced the cancellation of fall football in five Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) conferences — Ivy League, Patriot League, Colonial Athletic Association (CAA), Mid-Eastern Athletic Association (MEAC), and Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC).
Only one of those conferences, the SWAC, announced their intention to play in the Spring of 2021. Others will explore the possibility of holding a Spring season, although scheduling could prove to be difficult due to other sports.
An additional five FCS non-conference football games have also been canceled as a result of decisions by two schools in the Pioneer Football League (PFL), Davidson and Dayton. Both Davidson and Dayton, via statements on their official websites, have announced that they “…will not play non-conference football games this fall.”
Below are the five PFL non-conference football games that have been canceled:
- Dayton at Southeast Missouri (Sept. 3)
- Davidson at Campbell (Sept. 5)
- Barton at Davidson (Sept. 19)
- Robert Morris at Dayton (Sept. 19)
- Middle Ga. State at Davidson (Sept. 26)
Dayton’s Sept. 12 football game at Georgetown was previously canceled by the Patriot League.
A third PFL school, the Butler Bulldogs, also may not play a non-conference schedule in 2020. The Bulldogs have removed all three of their non-conference games from their official website — at South Dakota State (Sept. 5), at DePauw (Sept. 12; previously canceled by the North Coast Athletic Conference), and vs. Taylor (Sept. 19).
As for the remaining PFL teams, five still list their non-conference opponents. One school, Valparaiso, never officially announced their 2020 football schedule.
Included in both releases linked above, which were similar except for the school names, was a note that casts doubt on the entire 2020 PFL season.
“Similar to our other fall sports, it is presumed that (Davidson/Dayton) football may be postponed without a dramatic improvement in the COVID environment. We will work aggressively with the PFL and its membership to explore all competitive opportunities for our scholar-athletes.”