College football programs across the country have made the difficult decision to opt out for the season because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.  Unfortunately, you can now add The University of South Dakota to this list.

After the cancellation of the upcoming South Dakota State Jackrabbits game and now Western Illinois' decision to opt out of its remaining games, USD announced on Tuesday, April 6th the Coyotes season will come to a close.

USD Athlete Director David Herbster released in a statement, "The team is no longer seeking a replacement game for April 17th."

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This announcement obviously does not come lightly.  Your hearts automatically go out to the Coyote student-athletes who were committed and determined to have a football season, especially the seniors.  Herbster explains the only thing everyone can do now for the program is to have hope for a stronger and full fall season.

"We all knew this was going to be a different kind of season, but as we moved forward and games were canceled due to COVID-19, it became apparent that what our team needed was a degree of certainty moving forward.  After the SDSU game being canceled and Western opting out, the only certainty we could offer our program at this time is the upcoming fall season."

USD Head Football Coach Bob Nielson has nothing but respect and pride for his players for overcoming so many challenges throughout the year.  "I am proud of our players for the way that they handled both the challenges and the frustrations of this spring season.  We are excited to move forward and place our entire focus on the fall of 2021."

The USD Coyotes are set to have 11 games for the 2021 fall season.  Coyote action starts with a Big 12 matchup at Kansas on September 4th followed by the home opener against Northern Arizona on September 11th.

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