Florida-Idaho declared “no contest,” Gators pay Vandals with game to be scheduled for 2017

By Adam Silverstein
September 3, 2014

The Florida Gators and Idaho Vandals have decided to cancel – rather than reschedule – their season-opening college football game, which was set to take place on Saturday, Aug. 30 from Ben Hill Griffin Stadium in Gainesville, Florida, before first being delayed and then suspended due to weather.

Florida will pay Idaho its contractually agreed upon $975,000 fee for the game. The schools also agreed to schedule a contest as part of their the 2017 season slates.

“We looked at a number of options and, in the end, we both thought it was in the best interest of our student-athletes and football programs to play out the remainder of our respective schedules as they stand,” Gators athletic director Jeremy Foley said in a school release.

Added Vandals AD Rob Spear: “I want to thank UF, especially AD Jeremy Foley, for the professional and first-class way they worked through this issue and the focus on student-athlete welfare. It was not in our best interest to play 11 consecutive weeks without a bye week. We look forward to our return to Florida in 2017.”

Though both programs shared an open date on Oct. 25, moving the game to that day would have forced Florida to play nine-straight games to end the regular season; Idaho would have been even worse off, competing in [11] consecutive contests without a break.

Moving the game to Oct. 25 also would have cost UF its regularly-scheduled bye week ahead of its annual neutral-site rivalry game against Georgia in Jacksonville. UGA also has an open date the week before the game, giving it an advantage on its border rival should the UI game have been moved to that day.

Other options were reportedly considered, such as the Gators and Vandals meeting in December, but such a decision would have been a conflict for Florida team hoping to play in its league title game (Dec. 6) and/or a postseason bowl game this year.

Full refunds are being offered for fans who purchased tickets to the game. For more information on the ticket refund policy for this game, click here.


  1. Ken (CA) says:

    I don’t know who Mark Long is, but the Gators certainly are losing money – about 8-10 million dollars in revenue generated by game day. Gutsy decision by Foley to take that hit and look at the bigger picture.

    • He’s an AP writer that covers the team. He’s saying Florida has insurance to cover much of the losses.

      • Ken (CA) says:

        I guessed that was his point, but the cost of Idaho’s guarantee is minimal compared to refunding tickets and all of the other lost revenue, which is a big hit considering the home games are where the UAA makes most of its money for the year.

        • Marlex says:

          There is specific event insurance available to cover lost ticket revenue in case of weather. I’ve been part of festivals which had it in case they were rained out. I’m assuming there is something similar for sporting events.

        • Scott says:

          Ken… Adam and Mark are both indicating that we budgeted the $975,00 payoff and that UF has insurance to cover the lost revenue, including the ticket refund, the lost concessions, and any other lost revenue due to an act of god…. Probably very standard for all teams when so many variables can come into play with an event of this magnitude. It isn’t a stretch at all if you have done your homework and put the necessary risk mitigation in place.

  2. Hostile says:

    So will they have to pay Idaho in 2017?

  3. Dave Massey says:

    Hate to say I told you so, but I will anyways, I told you so.

  4. Michael Jones says:

    I will be glad when the WM regime no longer has that eerie, surreal, snake-bitten aura surrounding it. I’ve seen a lot of weird stuff over the past year and a half that I’m not used to as a Gator fan.

    And no, I’m not saying that the weather was WM’s fault. Just saying that for a program that needs every win it can muster for more reasons than one, this was another tough hit.

    • Dave Massey says:

      Amen, brother.

      Let’s just move on from this with a positive attitude that things must get better. These setbacks are nothing compared to what we endured in the seventies and eighties, etc.

      • Tractorr says:

        Our winning ways have made people’s expectations unreasonable. I know last season sucked and seeing the string of winning seasons end was heart breaking, but during our run of winning seasons Alabama had four losing seasons and they were the SEC program with the fewest losing seasons over that time.

    • G2 says:

      I’m with you M Jones, things just too weird for me, been watching football for more years than I care to disclose and never seen this. Especially when you have been waiting 9 months. I wonder if a “dark cloud” follows WM around or maybe just bad karma coming back around from his evil predecessor (thought he had extraordinary luck on his side).

      In any event I do think we’ll have a good year, offense will score points and will finish 1st or 2nd in the East (don’t know if anyone can stop Gurley?)

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