The decision by the athletics department at the University of Miami to cancel this weekend's game here in Jonesboro is a disappointment on many levels. The financial impact is deep, and the logistics the A-State Athletics Department tried to pull off were more than admirable. But what's done is done, and it's time to move forward.
Many fans and "experts" are taking to social media with the idea that Miami Coach Mark Richt is afraid to come here and play Arkansas State at home for fear of competition. That is ludicrous. It's his job to take on any and every team on the road to success.
What nobody seems to be talking about is that the University of Miami canceled ALL of their sporting events this weekend. They canceled the game here at A-State, women's soccer, cross country, and their women's volleyball team isn't traveling to Philadelphia to play.
They did what they thought was right. Would we do the same thing? I hope so. What if we were in their situation? Wouldn't it be awful for our students, coaches, and staff to possibly become victims of a horrible situation because we were chasing competition and money?
Let's think about the victims. The TRUE victims.
Victoria, Texas - a town about the size of Jonesboro was devastated when the eye of Hurricane Harvey passed over. They are victims.
Houston, Texas - where thousands of homes are still filled with water this many days later. They are victims.
Miami is facing the strong possibility of a direct hit from a category 4 or 5 hurricane. One way or another, they will be victims.
But we are not victims in all this.
Does it hurt? Yes. But this weekend A-State's team, coaches, fans, and parents can rest easy because we will be safe under clear skies and temperatures in the 80s. No need to worry about the logistics of evacuating. No judgment calls to be made under a microscope.
As head coach Blake Anderson said – "There are things that are more important than any football game." This is one. Keeping that in perspective makes this A Better Region 8.
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