The University of Virginia athletics department announced on Sunday that the football program has completed its 2020 season and will decline to participate in any postseason bowl game.
The call was made by UVA Director of Athletics, Carla Williams, and Fralin Family Head Football Coach, Bronco Mendenhall.
Mendenhall is in his fifth season with the Cavaliers and under him, UVA has made three consecutive appearances in postseason bowl games. The Cavs were at the Military Bowl in 2017, the Belk Bowl in 2018 and the Orange Bowl in 2019. This is the first time in three years they will not participate in a postseason bowl game.
“Unless you live it each and every day, it is impossible to understand the mental, emotional and physical sacrifice these young men have made since their return in July,” Williams said. “I am proud of their commitment and their incredible maturity. Our students did everything we asked them to do and they were rewarded with the opportunity to compete in the sport they love when many doubted it could be done.”
On Sunday, Mendenhall met with the program’s captain and task unit leaders to discuss and make a decision on whether or not they should continue the season and potentially accept the bowl invitation.
“I told our team I valued their feedback and I wanted this to be their decision,” Mendenhall said. “Just as we met at the beginning of the year to make the choice to play, this was their choice to end the season at this time. I think it is appropriate for this team.”
UVA was projected to participate in one of the Atlantic Coast Conference’s affiliated bowl games in 2020.