There will be no football game between Cardinal O'Hara (Pa.) School and Haverford (Pa.) School on Saturday, despite both teams being ready and raring to compete in an official game. It may rain, but weather will have nothing to do with the reason for the game's cancellation, either.
Rather, the long-scheduled nonleague matchup was called off because of an ongoing strike by high school teachers in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. As reported by the Philadelphia Inquirer's Ted Silary, Cardinal O'Hara moved to cancel all of its sports activities for the length of the strike, apparently because most of the coaches for the school's varsity teams are also teachers at the school.
The decision to call off the game has to be one of the few cases (if not the only one) of a varsity football game being canceled solely because of a teacher's strike.
Interestingly, Cardinal O'Hara is the only Catholic school in the Philadelphia area that canceled its forthcoming games during the strike, leading some to question precisely why the game would be canceled … particularly while the football team has been allowed to practice, and has done so on a relatively regular schedule.
For his part, Cardinal O'Hara football coach Danny Algeo said that he understood the school's decision to cancel all games during the continuing strike, though he also said he was disappointed that Saturday's game was lost, and that Haverford has been left with almost no time to find a suitable replacement for O'Hara to stage a game on Saturday.
"I'm not really mad at anybody," O'Hara coach Danny Algeo told the Inquirer. "It's just a bad situation. It stinks. I feel bad for our kids and for Haverford's, too. Now they have to scramble for a game."
While it may be nearly impossible to know if the O'Hara-Haverford game is the first to officially be called off solely because of a teacher's strike, it certainly is a rare and unique situation in which both teams are ready to play, all weather conditions are ripe for a game and yet none will be allowed to take place.
"I am just so bummed for our kids," HS [Haverford School] coach Michael Murphy said. "They have worked too hard to lose out on playing a game."