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UAB heads to Rice with limited players due to COVID-19

Updated: Dec. 11, 2020 at 5:59 PM CST
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - UAB is one win away from playing in the Conference USA Championship next week, but this Saturday against Rice, the Blazers will have fewer players than normal due to COVID-19.

“We have less than 70 players making the trip due to COVID and contact tracing, but the players that are here have all tested negative,” said UAB head coach Bill Clark.

UAB left behind more than 20 players Friday afternoon. Nearly a dozen of those either start or see a lot of playing time. Clark did not release any names, but says we’ll know during warm ups who isn’t there. “They’re all big names to me, but it’s next man up. I feel good about the practices we’ve had and really just our attitude, and excitement,” said Clark.

Saturday will be 42 days since the Blazers last played in a game. With limited players and more walk-ons making the trip, Clark says this team is motivated more than ever, to have a chance to play for another conference championship.

“I don’t know if they could be more motivated. Obviously, they’ve been wanting to play for quite some time, I felt bad all the times that games were canceled midweek, but really all we’ve asked for is an opportunity and championships are what we’ve tried to put our whole program on and we’re ready for this next challenge,” added Clark.

If UAB wins Saturday, the Blazers will become the first team in CUSA history to play in three straight Conference USA championship games.

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