Saturday’s USC football game at Cal was postponed Tuesday due to a COVID-19 outbreak among Bears players.
“It was a difficult decision to postpone this Saturday’s game against USC,” Cal Athletic Director Jim Knowlton said in a statement. “We know how important every one of our games is to our student-athletes, especially our seniors who have been incredible representatives of the program, but it was the right thing to do.
“Due to additional impact on specific position groups, we have decided to postpone Saturday’s game. We have had multiple COVID-19 positives within our program, and we are taking every step we can to mitigate the spread and protect the greater community.”
Cal officials initially said the university had contacted the Pac-12 Conference about possibly rescheduling the game for later this season. About an hour later, officials at Cal and USC announced that the game had been rescheduled for Dec. 4.
Under Pac-12 rules, if the game had not been rescheduled, it would have been recorded as a Cal forfeit, and a win for USC.
The COVID-related postponement is the first of the season in the Pac- 12, and the first among major college football conferences.
Cal played last Saturday’s game against the Arizona Wildcats without roughly two dozen players due to COVID rules.
Head coach Justin Wilcox said in a statement Tuesday, “Our heart goes out to all of the people who enjoy our games in so many ways and especially the players who only get so many chances to go out and play them. Postponing this game was a last resort and not an action any of us wanted to take, however, it was not possible for us to field a team on Saturday.”