Holiday Bowl canceled due to COVID issues in UCLA locker room

Sports

FILE – The College Football Playoff logo is shown on the field at AT&T Stadium before an NCAA college football game in Arlington, Texas, Jan. 1, 2021. The Holiday Bowl became the fifth postseason college football game to be canceled when UCLA was forced to pull out just hours before kickoff because of COVID-19 issues with the team, Tuesday, Dec.28, 2021. (AP Photo/Roger Steinman, File)

SAN DIEGO, Calif. (KSNW) — As COVID cases continue to surge across the nation, college football has had its fair share of cancellations, as the Holiday Bowl between UCLA and North Carolina State has been canceled due to personnel issues in the UCLA locker room.

The game is the fifth major bowl game to be canceled, joining the Hawaii, Military, Fenway, and Arizona Bowls. UCLA and NC State were scheduled to kick off at 6 p.m. on Tuesday.

According to sources close to the UCLA program, UCLA’s defensive line room had two total interior linemen available, and with more testing positive this morning, there were not enough players available to play.

UCLA joins Miami, Boston College, Virginia, and Texas A&M, who all had to withdraw from their respective bowls.

Some bowl committees have successfully found replacements for their games, such as Rutgers filling in for Texas A&M, but with so little time before kickoff, it is unlikely for a replacement to be found for the Holiday Bowl.

North Carolina State has seen their athletic successes clouded with COVID going all the way back to June of 2021, when their baseball team had to withdraw from the College World Series due to a positive test and contact tracing that left them with eight available players.

For K-State fans, the Texas Bowl is still scheduled to be played between K-State and LSU, with kickoff set for 8 p.m. on Jan. 4, 2022.

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