One night before Christmas, the University of Hawai’i and the University of Memphis found coal in their stockings. Less than 24 hours before the two schools were scheduled to participate in the Hawai’i Bowl, the Hawai’i Rainbow Warriors announced that they would not be able to participate due to wide range of COVID-19 related issues. Unable to find a replacement in less than 24 hours, organizers were forced to cancel the event.
“The health and safety of our student-athletes is the most important part of this decision,” Hawai’i Athletics Director David Matlin told ESPN.
“We are disappointed for our players, coaches, and fans. ESPN and the EasyPost Hawai’i Bowl staff did everything they could for us and we appreciate their valiant effort throughout the week. We want to thank the Memphis Tigers for making the long trip to Hawai’i. We are disappointed we can’t compete on the football field.”
The Rainbow Warriors are not the only team to be sidelined this bowl season due to COVID-19. Earlier this week, the Texas A&M Aggies pulled out of the TaxSlayer Gator Bowl. Fortunately, the Rutgers Scarlet Knights are able to step in and play against the Wake Forest Demon Deacons on December 31.