2021 Army and Fenway Bowl games canceled as COVID-19 continues to affect college football playoffs
Military Bowl 2021 has been canceled for the second year in a row. Boston College was forced to withdraw from its game against East Carolina, scheduled for Monday, due to a combination of COVID-19 cases and injuries, according to Stephen Igoe of 247Sports. Additionally, the Fenway Bowl, along with SMU and Virginia, was called off after positive cases on the Cavaliers roster. The game was set to be the last for coach Bronco Mendenhall at UVA after his resignation from the program earlier this month
The bowls are outright second and third cancellations of bowling season, joining Hawaii retiring from the Hawaii Bowl against Memphis on Christmas Eve. Additionally, Texas A&M was forced to withdraw from the Gator Bowl due to COVID concerns, but Rutgers stepped in to take the Aggies’ place as a 5-7 squad. Last season, 18 bowls were canceled by the pandemic.
The game is the second consecutive bowl game called off for SMU, although the Mustangs have reportedly been deprived of much of the coaching staff following the departure of former coach Sonny Dykes for TCU. The Cavaliers, meanwhile, were looking for their third victorious season in the past four years under Mendenhall before new coach Tony Elliott took over the program.
For East Carolina, the cancellation is particularly disappointing. The Pirates haven’t played in a bowl game since 2014, but were 7-5 in Mike Houston’s third season. Boston College has not won a bowl game since 2016.
âIt’s painful to digest,â Houston said. “I am suffering for the young men who represent our football program. We are devastated that we cannot compete on Monday and give our seniors one last chance to wear the Pirate uniform. Everyone involved in our program has persevered in it. adversity in the past two years during this pandemic, so it was extremely difficult to tell them that the 2021 season is over. ”