PORTLAND, Ore. — A challenging and constantly changing college football season amid the COVID-19 pandemic took another turn Monday when the Pac-12 announced Oregon would replace Washington in the Pac-12 championship game.
Washington had to pull out due to COVID-19 issues in the Huskies program, and Oregon will now play No. 13 USC for the conference title on Friday instead.
Washington (3-1) announced Monday it is withdrawing from the championship game after determining the Huskies did not have at least 53 scholarship players available and did not meet the minimum number of scholarship athletes at specific positions.
"We have not been able to resume football activities and currently the entirety of one of our key position groups, deemed a critical position group by the Pac-12, is in quarantine," said UW football coach Jimmy Lake. "Our focus now is getting everyone healthy so we can resume football activities and prepare for a possible bowl game. We are crushed that we cannot bring home the Pac-12 trophy for our fans, staff and players."
Washington team physician Dr. Kim Harmon said the program has continued to see positive cases over the past several days.
“This increase in cases, combined with issues with a key position group, doesn’t allow for a path forward for us this week,” Harmon said in a statement.
Washington was named Pac-12 North champ by virtue of having a better winning percentage than Oregon.
Just a day ago, the Pac-12 announced its schedule for the final weekend of football game. Oregon was expected to face No. 21 Colorado at Memorial Coliseum in Southern California on Saturday. It's not clear at this point who Colorado will now face with Oregon in the championship game.