The anticipated in-state match-up between Houston and Baylor — which came together in a matter of hours in the last week — was canceled on Friday, due to COVID-19 concerns. However, it was not canceled due to positive tests.
According to SicEm365, Baylor had a position group which would have been almost entirely unable to play Saturday due to contact tracing, despite the fact that none of the players had tested positive for COVID. The unavailability of those players put the Bears under the Big 12's threshold to be able to play a game.
SicEm365 — According to a source close to the Baylor program, the Bears would have been without a significant portion of a single position group making it unsafe to play. That information was the driving factor behind the cancelation.
The decision came with extreme frustation, however.
Due to local goverment guidelines, contact tracing, not positive results of conducted COVID-19 tests on football players and staff members, led to the decision to postpone the game. Because of the guidelines in place, multiple Baylor players were set to miss the game as a direct result of contact tracing and not due to positive COVID-19 tests, the source said.
This is going to be the issue for college football this season. Even in the absence of positive tests, as long as contact tracing is required, programs are going to have issues like this where entire position groups can be wiped out by a random kid in a physics class.
Hopefully rapid point-of-care tests become more readily available and contact tracing is no longer necessary and we can get through the rest of the season relatively uninterrupted. Until then, though, there are going to be incidents like this.
The cancellation makes this the 16th FBS game canceled so far this season.