CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – North Carolina’s first-ever non-conference game against Charlotte on Saturday has been canceled due to COVID-19 concerns within the 49ers football program.
Charlotte announced the decision on Thursday morning, noting that the decision was made due to the impact that contact tracing quarantines had on its offensive line. Several offensive linemen were placed into quarantine following the school’s COVID-19 contact tracing protocols.
“We’re extremely disappointed to have to cancel our game at North Carolina. While I know our team is heartbroken, due to the number of players in quarantine, we could not safely play,” Charlotte athletic director Mike Hill said in a school release. “We very much appreciate the University of North Carolina working with us to schedule this game.”
Charlotte has had three positive coronavirus cases over the past two weeks. Those individuals have been isolated, while other affected individuals were notified to quarantine for 14 days by the school’s contact tracing group. Conference USA has not made public its guidelines for the cancelation or postponement of football games due to COVID-19. The ACC guidelines, which were made public last week following the postponement of the Virginia-Virginia Tech game on Sept. 19, indicate that a team must have at least seven scholarship offensive linemen available to play for the game to occur.
The Tar Heels won their season opener against Syracuse, 31-6, last Saturday and are scheduled for a bye the weekend of Sept. 26. UNC will return to action with a game at Boston College on Oct. 3.
Charlotte was a late addition to UNC’s 2020 football schedule due to the ACC’s revamped 10+1 schedule announced last month. The Tar Heels announced the first-ever meeting between the two in-state programs on Aug. 8.
UNC had previously agreed to a home-and-home series with Charlotte back in 2015. The Tar Heels will host the 49ers on Sept. 7, 2024 and will play at Charlotte on Sept. 6, 2025.