Coronavirus: Fenway, Military bowls canceled due to COVID-19 outbreaks

Two college football bowl games were canceled Sunday due to COVID-19 concerns with the teams participating in the postseason contests.

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The Fenway Bowl, scheduled for Wednesday in Boston, was canceled because the University of Virginia, scheduled to face SMU at Fenway Park, did not have enough healthy players to participate, ESPN reported.

The Military Bowl, which had been scheduled for Monday in Annapolis, Maryland, had to be called off because Boston College also did not have enough healthy players on its roster, according to The Associated Press. The Eagles were set to face East Carolina at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium.

It is the second straight year the Fenway Bowl has been canceled due to COVID-19, reported.

The decision also means Virginia coach Bronco Mendenhall will leave the program without an official send-off, The Washington Post reported. Mendenhall announced he would be resigning at the end of the season.

“We are extremely disappointed the team will not be able to participate in the inaugural Fenway Bowl,” Virginia athletics director Carla Williams said in a statement. “Playing this game was something our team very much looked forward to and it is unfortunate Coach Mendenhall will not have one last opportunity to coach this group.”

Boston College made it through the entire 2020 with only one positive COVID-19 case but declined the opportunity to play in a bowl game, ESPN reported.

But athletic director Pat Kraft said more than 40 players were unavailable for the Military Bowl due to COVID-19, injuries, opt-outs and transfers, according to the AP.

“This is not the way we wanted to see this season come to an end,” Boston College head football coach Jeff Hafley said in a statement. “We just do not have enough players to safely play a game. My heart goes out to our seniors who will not have one final opportunity to wear a BC jersey and I can’t thank them enough for all the contributions they made to our program.”

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