For C-USA Reschedulings, Divisional Games Could Be Top Priority
As the UTEP football team gets ready for their upcoming road game against Charlotte, they are still left with a bit of uncertainty on what will happen with their postponement against Southern Miss.
The Golden Eagles were unable to field a team and get on a plane to El Paso last weekend, as they had positive cases of COVID-19 internally. As a result, Saturday's matchup was postponed and the two teams are looking to the first two weekends of December as a possible rescheduling.
"It's so difficult as a head coach right now because you're constantly dodging," Miners head coach Dana Dimel said about navigating through these times. "Three times a week players are getting tested and you don't know what will happen. Positive cases here in El Paso have soared through the roof and we're trying to keep guys locked in. That's the big concern."
"We've been blessed that our team has done the right thing. It's a blessing but any day it can change. It's something you don't have ultimate control over."
Conference USA decided to push its championship game from Dec. 5 to Dec. 18 in order to allow two weeks for potential reschedulings. The league has been hit hard with postponements and cancelations. UTSA has played the most games out of anyone in the league with six, while other schools like Southern Miss (4), Charlotte (3), Florida International (2), Florida Atlantic (1) and Rice (0) have played four or fewer games thus far.
Since the league will use the two weeks in December to reschedule games that were otherwise postponed, C-USA also must prioritize which games get played. For example, the Charlotte-North Carolina matchup is canceled and likely won't be made up since it's a non-conference game. Similarly, Dimel expects the league to prioritize divisional matchups being played over cross-divisional league games.
Since UTEP and Southern Miss are both in the West Division of C-USA, the rematch is likely to happen in early December at some point. If the Charlotte-UTEP game has an unforeseen problem and has to be canceled this weekend, the two schools might not get to make up the game since it's a west versus east divisional league matchup.
"They want to try to do divisional games first," Dimel explained. "If you have multiple misses, like three or more, then the divisional games could take president or games that have an impact on teams going to bowl games or impact on divisional championship that would override anything. You can't lock in games yet until you see the full cycle of games that are going to be missed."
The message is clear: play as many games as your team possibly can or else reschedulings can get messy in December. We'll just have to wait and see to find out when UTEP will reschedule its only lost game of the season so far.
C-USA Football Standings