Nov. 25 (UPI) -- The COVID-19-caused cancellation of Saturday's Wisconsin-Minnesota game will end the longest uninterrupted series in Football Bowl Subdivision history. The Badgers and Golden Gophers had played for 113 consecutive years.
Minnesota paused all football-related activities on Tuesday after nine student-athletes and six staff members tested positive for COVID-19 in a five-day period. The Badgers were scheduled to host the Golden Gophers at 1 p.m. EST on Saturday in Madison, Wis.
"I am disappointed for our student-athletes and our fans that we will not be able to compete on Saturday, but we need to focus on the health of our student-athletes and staff, which means stopping the spread of the virus," Minnesota coach P.J. Fleck said in a news release.
"I support the decision made by our administration and medical professionals in consultation with the Big Ten conference, and I want to thank our athletic trainers and team doctors for everything they are doing to support our program. We will return when it is determined safe to do so by medical experts."
Saturday's planned game will not be rescheduled and has been ruled a no-contest, per Big Ten policy for the 2020 season. The Badgers and Golden Gophers had played every year since 1907, prior to Tuesday's decision to skip the annual Big Ten matchup.
Wisconsin now has had three games canceled so far in 2020 due to positive COVID-19 tests. Wisconsin's prior matchups against Nebraska and Purdue were called off due to positive tests within the Badgers football program.
Wisconsin is now down to just five regular-season games. The Big Ten mandated that teams must compete in at least six games this season to be eligible to compete in the conference championship.
The Badgers are scheduled to host Indiana at 3:30 p.m. EST on Dec. 5. The Golden Gophers are scheduled to host Northwestern on Dec. 5.