Head coach Randy Edsall supported the move, saying it was "the best decision" for the team.
"We engaged and listened to the concerns of our football student-athletes and feel this is the best decision for their health, safety, and well-being," Edsall said in the news release. "Our team is united in this approach and we will use this time to further player development within the program and gear ourselves to the 2021 season."
UConn football players also released a joint statement approving of the department's decision to cancel their season.
"As a team we are in full support of the decision to not compete in 2020. We have many health concerns and not enough is known about the potential long term effects of contracting COVID-19," it read. "Additionally, we have not had the optimal time to train mentally & physically to be properly prepared to compete this season. We love this game and love competing. We came to campus in the beginning of July knowing there would be challenges presented by the pandemic but it is apparent to us now that these challenges are impossible to overcome."
Elsewhere, universities are grappling with decisions to reform or continue athletics as the coronavirus continues to spread across the country.
Just last week, more than a dozen players on the Rutgers University football team tested positive for COVID-19. The outbreak reportedly stemmed from an on-campus party.
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