Florida Gators football

COVID-19 shadows title game as college football season ends

For sports fans, the odd atmosphere has become frustratingly familiar — like Alabama, which beat Ohio State 52-24 to complete an unbeaten season, the Lakers, Lightning and Dodgers won championships in mostly empty arenas.

But the challenges college football faced in navigating the pandemic were unique, as Heisman Trophy winner DeVonta Smithnoted after catching three touchdown passes to lead Alabama to victory.

Many were pessimistic the season would ever reach the finish line when it began Aug. 29 with the Guardian Kickoff Classic between Austin Peay and Central Arkansas, a game attended by far fewer than the 2,000 tickets that were available.

Ohio State was without 13 players, and while the school didn’t give a reason, Day acknowledged last week the Buckeyes were dealing with new cases of the virus.

That made it appropriate he was at the center of the championship trophy celebration, to applause from masked, socially distancing Crimson Tide fans scattered around the stadium.

“Perseverance probably is the one word that describes this team the best,” Saban said, “in terms of what they’ve had to overcome all season long to go undefeated and win a championship.”

Powered by Blogger.