The week two matchup between the Arkansas State Red Wolves and the Miami Hurricanes is now officially cancelled. With Hurricane Irma looming, the attention has turned to the well being of the staff, student-athletes and their families.
University of Miami athletic director Blake James released a statement on what led to the game being called off.
“The decision to cancel these athletic contests is difficult, especially as some are scheduled to take place away from Miami. However, we made the collective decision that we simply cannot put our student-athletes, coaches and staff in danger travelling to and from contest.”
In a game in which the Hurricanes would have been the highest-ranked opponent to ever visit Centennial Bank stadium, the game will now be cancelled without the possibility of rescheduling in 2017. Other state schools have also been affected by Hurricane Irma.
Florida State has decided to move it’s kickoff time in their home opener against Louisiana-Monroe up to noon rather than the previously scheduled seven o’clock time. The FIU Panthers and new coach Butch Davis have decided to move their home opener out of Miami and will face Alcorn State on a Friday in Birmingham, Alabama.
Both the University of South Florida and Florida Atlantic have away games where they will compete with the University of Connecticut and the Wisconsin Badgers, respectively. The University of Florida is also expected to move up its kickoff time in its home opener against the University of Northern Colorado.
Even the Miami Dolphins have had to reschedule their regular season opener with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to a later date in November.
The Hurricanes now have only 11 regular season games and strength of schedule could be a factor moving down the line, if they finish undefeated.
With Arkansas State off the table, the Hurricanes will shift it’s focus to Florida State after the storm. The Seminoles will look to continue it’s dominance over Miami, having won seven straight.
They will have to do so without their leader Deondre Francois who is out for the season after tearing his patella tendon in his knee. True freshman James Blackman will be the starting quarterback moving forward.