Saturday’s game between Missouri and No. 12 Georgia has been postponed due to positive COVID-19 tests and contact tracing within the Missouri football program. A new date for the game “will need to be evaluated,” according to a league announcement.
Missouri already has a game tentatively scheduled for Dec. 12, which is the bye week built in by the SEC to allow for potential schedule changes throughout the season. But the league is now also considering using Dec. 19 as a date for rescheduled games in addition to playing the conference championship game that day.
It’s the fourth SEC game originally scheduled for this weekend that has been postponed due to COVID-19. No. 24 Auburn won’t play at Mississippi State due to issues at Mississippi State; No. 5 Texas A&M’s issues have caused its game vs. Tennessee to be postponed and the showdown between No. 1 Alabama and LSU in Baton Rouge is off due LSU’s outbreak.
“While it is unfortunate to have multiple postponements in the same week, we began the season with the understanding interruptions to the schedule were possible and we have remained focused throughout the season on the health of everyone around our programs,” SEC commissioner Greg Sankey said. “We must remain vigilant, within our programs and in our communities, to prevent the spread of the virus and to manage activities that contribute to these interruptions.”
The SEC mandates that teams must have at least one quarterback, seven offensive linemen, four defensive linemen and 53 total scholarship players in order to play. Games that are unable to be rescheduled will be declared no contests.
Postponed games are just part of the story in the SEC. Auburn paused football activities one day after its game vs. Mississippi State was postponed. Arkansas coach Sam Pittman will not coach this week at No. 6 Florida after testing positive for COVID-19 on Sunday. Defensive coordinator Barry Odom, the former coach at Missouri, will serve as the interim head coach in his absence.