UW Huskies’ 2020 season opener against Michigan scrapped
After the Big Ten conference announced Thursday that its fall sports teams, including its football teams, would not be participating in out of conference games in 2020, the thought here in Seattle was how that would impact the UW Huskies, who were slated to play Michigan in Seattle in both teams’ season openers. A few hours later, UW confirmed that the game will not take place.
“Based on the Big Ten Conference’s announcement that its member schools will not play any non-conference football games this coming fall due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Washington’s game vs. Michigan, scheduled for Sept. 5 at Husky Stadium, has been cancelled,” the school said in a news release.
In 2018, it was announced that the two teams, which have faced off 12 times including four times in the Rose Bowl, would play a home and away series in 2020 and 2021. According to UW, the plan is for next year’s game at Michigan to still take place.
With the Big Ten’s decision to only compete against teams within the conference, it’s expected that other conferences, including the Pac-12, will soon follow suit. For now, the UW Huskies’ only impacted game is the game against Michigan.
“For the time being, this cancellation is the only change to the 2020 football season,” the university said. “Additionally, plans to re-schedule the home game vs. Michigan for a later season will be announced once they’re made.”
UW athletic director Jen Cohen said that she has been in contact with Michigan athletic director Warde Manuel on getting UW’s home game on a future schedule, while noting that the decision to cancel the game was made due to COVID-19 and “prioritizing the health and well-being of student-athletes.”
As it stands, Washington has 11 games this season, with the team’s two remaining non-conference games scheduled against Sacramento State on Sept. 12 and Utah State on Sept. 19. The UW Huskies open conference play on Oct. 3 against Oregon in Eugene. With the Michigan game’s cancellation, Jimmy Lake’s first game as the Huskies’ head coach will be against Sacramento State.