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Hawaii Bowl canceled after Hawaii withdraws

Sportsnaut
Nov 27, 2021; Laramie, Wyoming, USA; Hawaii Rainbow Warriors running back Calvin Turner Jr. (7) runs against the Wyoming Cowboys during the fourth quarter at Jonah Field at War Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Troy Babbitt-USA TODAY Sports
Nov 27, 2021; Laramie, Wyoming, USA; Hawaii Rainbow Warriors running back Calvin Turner Jr. (7) runs against the Wyoming Cowboys during the fourth quarter at Jonah Field at War Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Troy Babbitt-USA TODAY Sports

A lack of available players led Hawaii to withdraw Thursday from the Hawaii Bowl, which was to be played Friday in Honolulu.

Memphis had been due to oppose the Rainbow Warriors, but the game is now canceled.

Hawaii was left short-handed due to COVID-19 protocols as well as players who were unavailable due to injuries or transfers.

Rainbow Warriors coach Todd Graham said in a statement, “We are disappointed our season has to end this way. As competitive as we are and as much as we want to play the game, we cannot put the health and safety of our student-athletes at risk.”

Hawaii athletic director David Matlin added in a statement, “The health and safety of our student-athletes is the most important part of this decision. The recent surge in COVID-19 cases has forced us to not participate in the game.

“We are disappointed for our players, coaches, and fans. ESPN and the EasyPost Hawaii Bowl staff did everything they could for us and we appreciate their valiant effort throughout the week. We want to thank the Memphis Tigers for making the long trip to Hawaii. We are disappointed we can’t compete on the football field.”

The Rainbow Warriors became the second team this week to be forced out of a bowl game due at least in part to COVID-19 issues. Texas A&M bowed out of the Gator Bowl, with Rutgers replacing the Aggies for the matchup with Wake Forest on Dec. 31.

Hawaii ends the year with a 6-7 mark while Memphis winds up 6-6.

–Field Level Media