Government Shutdown Could Mean Cancellation of Boston College, Army Football Game
Because of the federal government shutdown on Tuesday, Boston College may not get the chance to shut down Army’s Black Knights football team during this weekend’s scheduled home game.
According to a statement from the Navy, the Department of Defense has suspended all intercollegiate athletic competitions at its service academies as a result of the government shutdown, putting the annual Navy versus Air Force game in jeopardy. The halt on federal spending has trickled down to players on the U.S. Military Academy team as well, who are slated to suit up and take on BC at the Chestnut Hill stadium on Saturday. If the government doesn’t come to a compromise before the weekend, the shutdown could crush the match between the Black Knights and BC.
The school is doing everything it can to make sure that doesn’t happen, however.
In a statement from BC spokesman Jack Dunn, who confirmed that he spoke with athletic officials from the academy, they are working on a way to move forward as planned. “We have been in close communication with Army athletics officials regarding the potential effect of the government shutdown on this Saturday’s football game. Obviously our intention is to exhaust all possibilities to play the game. We will communicate information promptly as soon as we have a resolution,” Dunn said in the statement.
The school’s athletic director, Brad Bates, reiterated that message on Twitter on Tuesday.
Federal funding has stopped due to a stalemate in Congress over the budget, and the proposal to enact a one-year repeal of the Affordable Health Care Act. This is the first government shutdown of its kind in 17 years.
The current federal fiscal year ended Monday, September 30, and a “continuing resolution” must be passed in order for some governmental procedures to carry on as usual.
The Eagles, who are 2-2 on the season, is 11-2 against the Army’s Black Knights when playing on their home field, and 24-13 in the all-time series.
The game is supposed to be part of the return of BC’s Homecoming Weekend. According to the team’s website, for the first time in decades, Boston College is bringing back homecoming by kicking off the festivities on Friday night, with a pep rally and fireworks on Shea Field. The festivities are supposed to continue Saturday morning with a variety of pre-game activities scheduled before the Eagles take on the Army at Alumni Stadium. The game may be completely dependent on the government’s next move, however.
The federal budget feud has left many historic sites in Boston closed as the first day of the shutdown loomed. According to a spokesman from Boston’s National Historical Parks department, federally funded public sites such as the U.S.S. Constitution are closed because park employees are out on unpaid leave. Other sites that are shutdown include the Bunker Hill Monument and the African Meeting House on Beacon Hill.