While the Jackets roster was depleted for the Pitt game, Tech had gathered Sunday for team meetings and a workout on Sunday night to begin preparations to play Miami. The team’s athletic activities had been paused Thursday prior to the postponement of the Pitt game, with that day’s practice canceled. As of Monday, Tech was to practice on Tuesday.
That Miami was unable to play was not unexpected. The Hurricanes barely had enough available players for its game this past Saturday, a win at Virginia Tech. Coach Manny Diaz said Monday that, when he woke up last Friday morning, he wasn’t sure if the team would actually be able to make the trip to Blacksburg, Va.
“We are disappointed that we will not be able to play the next two weeks as scheduled but this decision was made in the best interests of the health and safety of all teams,” Miami AD Blake James said in a statement.
The scheduling fallout for both teams paints a picture of the growing challenges that the ACC and all of FBS will have to complete their seasons. In order to regain health and return players from quarantine, Miami will not only postpone its game against the Jackets, but its Nov. 28 game against Wake Forest.
The Tech-Miami game was one of six games that was moved on Monday, including three that don’t include either team, to accommodate the Hurricanes. The Tech-Miami game is scheduled for the same day as the ACC championship game, but it will only be played if Miami doesn’t earn a spot in the championship game and also if the outcome of the Jackets-Hurricanes game would not directly impact which two teams play for the ACC title.
Ten of the league’s 15 teams are now scheduled to play on Dec. 12 – which was set aside as an open date between the end of the regular season on Dec. 5 and the championship game Dec. 19 for makeup games. There are still 25 regular-season games involving ACC games to be played.
The league has little room left to postpone games at a time when the number of COVID cases and positivity rates are rising across the U.S.
“What we know is we don’t have a ‘coronavirus in college football’ problem,” Diaz said on a videoconference earlier Monday. "We have a ‘coronavirus in America’ problem.
“And everyone can see – or I would hope could see – you can’t say ‘Everyone can see’ because the way things are in 2020, everybody can’t agree on anything. But certainly, the math is saying that the numbers are really, really getting to a bad place.”