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St. Thomas' football opener canceled due to COVID protocols

The Sept. 4 opener was scheduled to be their Division I debut.

The University of St. Thomas will have to wait a little longer for its Division I debut as the university has canceled its 2021 football opener against St. Francis (Ill.) due to COVID protocols.

The Sept. 4 matchup with the Fighting Saints was set to be the Tommies' first game as a Division I program after receiving a waiver to move from Division III last summer. 

The Tommies will also remain on the sidelines as their last game was a 21-15 loss to Bethel on Nov. 11, 2019. The Tommies' 2020 season was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

"Our football program deserves great credit for its approach after a very long layoff between games," St. Thomas' vice president and director of athletics Phil Esten said in a statement. "They continue to do everything they can to prepare and put themselves in a position to have a successful fall season. Coach Glenn Caruso continues stressing the importance of remaining physically and mentally ready to compete."

Esten goes on to state that the Tommies have a 100 percent vaccination rate as a team and will look for another opponent to play at O'Shaugnessy Stadium either on Sept. 4 or later in the season.

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