Dec. 11 (UPI) -- The Pittsburgh football program won't participate in a bowl game this year, becoming the second team to decline a potential opportunity to compete in the 2020 postseason.
In a statement Friday, Pittsburgh said its decision to reject a future bowl invitation was made by the team and supported by the university.
On Thursday, the Boston College Eagles became the first team to opt out of playing in a bowl game this season. Boston College and Pittsburgh cited the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic and the desire to have student-athletes be able to spend time with family.
"In my three decades as a coach, I've never been around a group of players who have faced greater challenges beyond the field than our team this year," Pitt head coach Pat Narduzzi said in a statement.
"And yet, from the time they arrived back on campus in early June, these young men never wavered -- not in the face of rigorous health protocols, multiple rounds of COVID testing each week or while handling the mental and physical challenges of playing 11 games in a pandemic.
"I've always been proud to be Pitt's head football coach. That pride was especially great in working with this 2020 team. They have my eternal gratitude and respect."
The Panthers concluded their season with a 34-20 win over Georgia Tech on Thursday night to finish with a 6-5 record.