As I’ve thought about this more, it feels that the teams dropping out of these minor bowls (TAMU, Boston College, Virginia, Miami, Boise St., etc.) have more going on than JUST covid issues. They got a couple extra practices and were good.
- TAMU had a lot of injuries + some NFL opt outs + some transfer portal and then covid put them over the top (and they didn’t want a 5th loss).
- BC probably was more affected by covid - they could have gone to a bowl last year but opted out being a tough season.
- Virginia has a coaching change so has a lot of transfers and less leadership at the top to weather covid cases.
- Miami also has a coaching change so between transfers, opt outs, a few injuries, some covid was a food excuse to bail on El Paso.
- Who knows with Boise St. but it was a small payout so they got some extra practices in and called it good on a 7-5 season.
There’s also a reason that the opponents are also just calling it a season for the most part (SMU, Est Carolina, Memphis, etc.). They got some practices in and the hassle of changing logistics for a minor bowl weren’t worth it. Memphis was already in Hawai’i, so they weren’t going to travel again. WF and WSU still wanted to play in their ‘mid-level’ bowl and things worked out to get another team.
What I’m saying is that we don’t have any NFL opt outs for the game. We generally don’t have too many injuries (to key players). We could, knock on wood, weather a few covid protocol players if necessary. But it’d take a whole lot for us to not field a team. Ohio St. has the few notable hold outs (but Olave is in town just in case?) but unless there is a team breakout, they should be ready.
4 days. Stay healthy enough for 4 days. Teams are in town. They are out and about (instead of monitoring a ‘situation’ as far as we know). I saw somewhere that vaccinated players aren’t being tested unless they show symptoms? Or is there a screen test for all before the game?