Cal Poly Football has decided to opt out of the rest of the 2021 spring football season.
“It was a variety of factors, we’ve had a number of injuries, an unusual number of injuries,” Cal Poly Director of Athletics Don Oberhelman said. “We had some early season opt outs that depleted our roster and then a few of our fifth-year seniors decided to defer their spring enrollment to the fall so they could play a full season.”
After injuries and deferred seniors the Mustangs would only have 49 eligible student-athletes out of a roster of 110, which fails to meet the Big Sky minimum roster requirement of 53.
“Once we fell below that it became quite evident that we shouldn’t proceed with our season.” Oberhelman said.
Cal Poly joins fellow Big Sky programs Sacramento State, Portland State, Northern Colorado, Montana and Montana State, who opted out of the spring 2020-2021 season earlier this year in February.
During the first half of the season the Mustangs faced several COVID-19 related shutdowns, including a 17-day shutdown at the beginning of practices for the spring season, forcing them to cease all activities.
“It’s frustrating because you got games to prepare for and you can’t do it, so we were not fully preparing this team to be able to compete with all these shutdowns that we endured,” Oberhelman said.
Following three consecutive losses against Southern Utah (24-34), UC Davis (24-73) and Eastern Washington (10-62), Cal Poly will not finish their remaining schedule against Northern Arizona, UC Davis and Weber State.
“I still think that [the remaining games] were important, but at the end of the day the fall schedule is when you’re going to compete for real championships.” Oberhelman said.
Cal Poly’s 2021 fall season is scheduled to start on Sept. 4 away at the University of San Diego.