The scheduled Sept. 12 game between Oklahoma State and Tulsa has been pushed back a week due to disruptions in preseason practice caused by the coronavirus pandemic. The game will instead be played the following week in Stillwater, Oklahoma, on Sept. 19, per a release from Tulsa on Monday night.
"The safety and health of our student-athletes is always at the core of all of our discussions and decisions. Without time to properly prepare physically we would be putting our student-athletes at a greater risk of injury," said Tulsa AD Derrick Gragg in the release. "An open date for both schools presented us with the opportunity to reschedule the game for a week later. I'm appreciative of Mike Holder and Oklahoma State University for their cooperation in coming to this decision."
The announcement comes less than a month after Tulsa temporarily paused workouts in mid-August after eight players tested positive for COVID-19. Another eight players who came into direct contact with the positive cases were also in quarantine. Pausing practice for any period of time, though not uncommon over the past few months, affects preparation. Already in Week 1, Middle Tennessee, Navy and Eastern Kentucky have been examples of what happens when an overmatched, underprepared team tries to take the field.
Pushing this game back by a week probably doesn't change much, but that's why these conferences built in more open weeks. Another game with a Big 12 team -- SMU vs. TCU -- has been postponed while the Frogs deal with their own spike in positive cases of the COVID-19.