Black Friday’s Apple Cup matchup between Washington State and rival Washington at Martin Stadium has been cancelled, the Pac-12 announced Sunday afternoon.
WSU continues to struggle with the COVID-19 outbreak on the team and there was a slim possibility the school would have enough players available to meet the 53-play minimum.
“After assessing the overall status of our football program, we remain under the minimum threshold of 53 available scholarship student-athletes and cannot forecast a scenario that allows us to reach that threshold by the end of the week,” WSU AD Pat Chun said in a statement released by the school.
“The Boeing Apple Cup is one of the most sacred rivalries in all of sports and one of the most meaningful days of the year for all Washingtonians. It’s gut-wrenching and disappointing for our student-athletes and coaches as well as those at UW.”
The Pac-12 office confirmed WSU would likely not have enough players available to safely play the game.
“This decision was made under the Pac-12’s football policy due to Washington State not having the minimum number of scholarship players available for the game as a result of a number of positive football student-athlete COVID-19 cases and resulting isolation of additional football student-athletes under contact tracing protocols,” the Pac-12 said in a statement.
However, Chun appeared to leave the door open for WSU and UW to meet later in the season. If neither team wins the Pac-12 North division, they could possibly meet Dec. 19 in Pullman, the date set aside by the conference for crossover games.
“As we work through the remainder of our schedule, we will continue to communicate with the Pac-12 Conference and UW if any scenario would emerge that would allow us to reschedule the game at a later point in the season,” Chun said.