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WSU-Stanford football game canceled by Pac-12 due to COVID-19 cases

WSU coach Nick Rolovich is in his first year with the program. (AP)

By The Associated Press

The Pac-12 has canceled the WSU football game at Stanford on Saturday.

Last week: No. 11 Oregon beats WSU Cougars 43-29

The conference said Saturday night’s game has been called off because the Cougars don’t have enough scholarship players available because of positive COVID-19 tests and contact tracing.

This is the first game both schools have had canceled this season because of the coronavirus.

Washington State athletic director Pat Chun says the school has nine football players in COVID-19 protocols and four players had to be put into the protocol Friday morning leading to the cancellation of the game.

Chun said as of last weekend, the Cougars had zero players in their COVID protocols and the first positive test came early in the week. The four positives Friday morning kept WSU from reaching the Pac-12 mandate of 53 scholarship players available.

Chun said it was too early to know whether next Friday’s Apple Cup against rival Washington will be played as scheduled. He said figuring out the situation around the Apple Cup would begin Sunday.

“We’re going to get through tomorrow as planned and come Sunday we’ll start making our daily assessments about where our roster is at and where we’re at with everything related to trying to field a team on Friday,” Chun said.

It was reported Thursday night by Theo Lawson of The Spokesman-Review that Jayden de Laura, the Cougars’ true freshman starting quarterback, had been ruled out for the Stanford game due to a positive COVID-19 test. The Spokesman story also noted that de Laura could miss the Cougars’ next game if he is placed in a 14-day quarantine.

The Apple Cup is in danger of not being played for the first time since 1945, when two games were held after a hiatus from the series in 1943 and 1944 during World World II. The annual meeting between the Cougars and Huskies is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 27 at Washington State’s Martin Stadium in Pullman, Wash. If the game is played, it will air on 710 ESPN Seattle beginning with the pregame show at 5:30 p.m.

UW had its first game of the season canceled against Cal because of positive COVID-19 tests in the Bears’ program. The Huskies then had to wait an extra week to play their opener for the 2020 season, which they won last week against the Oregon State Beavers 27-21 at home. Washington will stay at Husky Stadium this weekend to host the Arizona Wildcats at 5 p.m. Saturday. staff members have contributed to this report.

College Football Insider with 710 ESPN Seattle’s Maura Dooley