Wake Forest awarded forfeit win for BC COVID cancellation

ACC protocols do not allow for the rescheduling of games, even when teams that are unable to play because of COVID issues are fully vaccinated

Transfer big man Dallas Walton dunks during Wake Forest's win against Charlotte at Spectrum Center last Friday (PJ Ward-Brown/North State Journal)

The Wake Forest basketball team has improved to 12-1 overall and 2-0 in the ACC this season. And it didn’t have to play a game to do it.

Under the ACC’s COVID protocols, which do not allow for games to be rescheduled, the Deacons were awarded a forfeit victory when their upcoming opponent, Boston College, announced it would not be able to play Wednesday’s scheduled conference contest in Winston-Salem.

“I appreciate Boston College AD Patrick Kraft calling me early this morning and keeping me apprised of their situation,” Wake athletic director John Currie said in a statement issued shortly after the forfeit was announced. “We will continue to work collaboratively with our colleagues to make the best possible decisions for all concerned.”

Judging from a Twitter post put out by BC’s official social media account, not everybody involved considers Wednesday’s forfeit a “best possible decision.”

“Because of the ACC’s antiquated rescheduling rules, Boston College has received a loss,” the post reads. “Absurd given that the team is fully vaccinated.”

BC’s school policy requires that all participants in intercollegiate activities must be vaccinated. The ACC’s forfeit rule was put into place before the Omicron variant arose and began affecting many of those who have not yet received a booster.

Because Wake Forest’s next two scheduled opponents, Louisville on December 29 and Florida State on January 4, are also currently in COVID pauses, those games are potentially in jeopardy as well.

It’s exactly the type of situation Deacons’ coach Steve Forbes said he feared when asked last week about the recent spike in COVID cases around the country.

“I’m very concerned,” he said following Friday’s win at Charlotte. “It bothers me that there’s kids that want to play games and can’t play these games across the country. It’s just exploded a little bit the last 24 hours, so yeah, I’m mindful of it and we’ve got to be vigilant in what we do.”