[Vandal] Idaho Road Tilt Against NAU Now Set For April

robiegruss at aol.com robiegruss at aol.com
Tue Mar 16 08:25:06 PDT 2021

>From The Lewiston TribuneLewiston, IdahoTuesday, March 16, 2021
Idaho Road Tilt Against NAU Now Set For April
Football game scrapped by virus will now come last on Vandal schedule
By Colton Clark
A previously postponed Big Sky Conference football game between the University of Idaho and Northern Arizona has been rescheduled for April 17, the Moscow school announced Monday.
Vandals vs. Lumberjacks, originally slated to be played last Saturday, was pushed back March 8 because of coronavirus issues on Idaho’s end. NAU coach Chris Ball indicated in a news conference Monday that the programs hoped to make up the game Saturday — an open date for the teams.
“We’re trying to get it scheduled, but we’re still not sure that’s gonna happen,” he said.
Instead, the contest will kick off at 1 p.m. at Walkup Skydome in Flagstaff, Ariz., in Week 8. April 17 is the final open regular-season date for Big Sky spring competition.
The league worked two bye weeks into its spring schedules to provide potential makeup dates for coronavirus-prompted postponements.
Idaho will have a second consecutive week off, then return to the field at noon March 27 to host Southern Utah at the Kibbie Dome in its final home game of the season.
“We’re focused on getting ready for Southern Utah in the Dome next weekend,” said Idaho coach Paul Petrino, quoted in a news release. “We were disappointed to lose the game last weekend but are thankful that the Big Sky Conference had planned for these situations with the built-in bye weeks. We’ll be ready for Northern Arizona when we get the chance on April 17.”
The short-handed Vandals (1-1) lost to UC Davis 27-17 on March 6. They were without nine key players, the majority of them presumably because of COVID-19 issues.
According to two sources with knowledge of the situation, multiple Idaho players — and some personnel — were still in the protocol as of this past weekend, making a Saturday game highly unlikely.
Idaho-NAU was the 14th Football Championship Subdivision spring-season game in only three weeks to be pushed back because of coronavirus concerns. HERO Sports reported that 35 FCS programs — including five from the Big Sky — opted out of the spring campaign.
“Nothing has shocked me in this,” Ball said. “I knew there were going to be some cancellations. I didn’t know with who, with us, or somebody else. This is all new to everybody.  We just gotta keep being positive, because it can be really frustrating. If you let it, it’ll drain you.”
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