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Lamar University’s football game with Rice gets final verdict

BEAUMONT – Lamar University and Rice have agreed to cancel their football game, which was originally scheduled for Sept. 26 in Houston.

The contest was the team’s lone remaining game scheduled for the fall after the Southland Conference elected to postpone all fall conference competitions for football, volleyball, soccer and cross country until the spring semester.

“I know this is a very heartbreaking decision for the coaches, players and fans of both schools,” said LU Director of Athletics Marco Born.

“At the end of the day, it comes down to a safety issue, and we must do what is in the best interest of our student-athletes. We have so many alumni in the Houston area and will always work to provide them with opportunities to come support us, but we felt this was the correct decision to make given the circumstances.”

The Southland Conference, in conjunction with the NCAA, halted all spring competitions due to the COVID-19 pandemic in March, a decision that eventually included spring practice.

That decision came just days before the Cardinals were set to open spring camp under new head coach Blane Morgan. LU also postponed the start of fall camp following newly enforced testing regulations by the NCAA for teams to return to play.

“There is no doubt that everyone in our building is very disappointed with having to do this,” said LU Head Coach Blane Morgan.

“There have been so many who have worked hard to get us in a position to get on the field and gain a since of normal life and routine for the student-athletes. With that being said, when you look at your team, the depth chart and where your guys are physically, decisions have to be made based on their safety. Although this was a tough decision, we believe it was the right one to make.”

Despite the Southland’s decision to postpone fall competitions, they left open the opportunity for institutions to play limited non-conference contests. LU will continue to explore those opportunities for all fall sports, as well as focus on the spring season.