Another cancellation: WVU vs. Florida State is axed
SHEPHERDSTOWN — You can still traipse on down to Jacksonville, Fla. to spend your Labor Day weekend, if you please. But don’t go to the West Virginia vs. Florida State football game that was to open the season for both schools.
After first seeing the Big 10 drop all its non-conference games — meaning the loss of the Maryland game — the Mountaineers are now another game light on the schedule, because the ACC has also cancelled most of its non-conference games. The West Virginia vs. Florida State kickoff game scheduled for the first Saturday in September has been cancelled, leaving the Mountaineers with a diminished 10-game slate that has only Eastern Kentucky in Morgantown as a non-conference match.
Florida State can still play Florida, because the ACC will allow non-conference games with schools in the same state (such as Georgia Tech vs. Georgia, Clemson vs. South Carolina and Louisville vs. Kentucky).
The Big 12, where West Virginia is a member, has not made any wholesale move to diminish its schedules. Neither has the SEC where Alabama, Georgia, Auburn, Louisiana State and Florida reside with their football powerhouses.
Of the nine Big 12 games the Mountaineers have, there will be five home games this season.
Even as the team expectations rise in the heated air of August, college football is still a fluid situation with the coronavirus chasing normalcy into the weeds of uncertainty.
Will there be any games played anywhere?
If there is a season attempted, will any fans be allowed in the stadiums?
Some schools have announced plans to allow 20 percent of a stadium’s seating capacity to be filled with people. At Ohio State’s horseshoe stadium where over 104,000 Buckeye boosters show up, only a little over 25,000 folks will be allowed in to see their boys wail another Big 10 opponent.
Even that announcement could be changed at any time as the season looms nearer and the virus keeps scoring more points than the teams or players.
As of early August, there won’t be any tailgating festivities or reveling allowed in the parking areas close to the stadiums. Tailgates have become more important than the actual games in some places.
Social distancing has become the odds-on favorite to win the national championship. Partially filled stadiums will give athletic departments some money with which to fund other sports that might actually be attempted in the spring.
Remember, all the spring sports were cancelled to seal the fate of the recently completed spring semester all across the NCAA landscape.
The NCAA will be loathe to lose another men’s basketball tournament, baseball, softball and track and field seasons to the pandemic.
Other scheduling announcements seem sure to be forthcoming.
Today is Friday. Don’t be a bit surprised if what is now in place will be erased and long gone by Thanksgiving. Maybe there will still be seven days in a week. Maybe not.