Florida announced Thursday that their game this weekend against Northern Colorado in Gainesville has been cancelled due to Hurricane Irma.
“We have been in constant communication this week with University and government officials,” said Gators athletics director Scott Stricklin. “As the Hurricane’s track has approached the state of Florida, it’s become obvious that playing a football game is not the right thing to do. The focus of our state and region needs to be on evacuations and relief efforts. There is a tremendous amount of stress currently on the roads of this state, and the availability of gas, water and other supplies are at critical levels. Playing a college football game Saturday would only add to that stress.”
The teams do share a common open date according to the release so the game will not be rescheduled. As a result, and this depends on what Hurricane Irma does to the state later this week, Florida’s next scheduled game is set for Saturday, September 16 against SEC East rival Tennessee at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium.
The potential category five storm has already forced the cancellation of another college football game as Miami announced earlier this week that their trip to play Arkansas State was cancelled as the Hurricanes made preparations prior to the front hitting landfall. Florida State moved up their kickoff in Tallahassee to noon against Louisiana-Monroe, while FIU moved their home game for Saturday to Birmingham, Ala. USF’s game at UConn was also moved up to 10:30 a.m. ET in order to allow the Bulls to get back to Tampa before Irma hits while FAU is making plans to stay in Madison for several days after playing Wisconsin if they can’t return to Boca Raton.
While some fans may grumble about games not being played, kudos to all involved in the state for understanding that college football is well down the list of priorities when it comes to such serious situations like this one.