"Between members of the coaching staff and student-athletes, COVID and contact tracing has taken a toll too high for us to overcome," South Carolina athletic director Ray Tanner said in a statement. "I have notified the bowl and the SEC office that we are not able to play in the game on Saturday."
UAB athletic director Mark Ingram said in a tweet that the Blazers were still hoping to play in the game if a new opponent could be found, but ESPN issued a statement saying that "we looked into a number of options for UAB, but ultimately could not identify any opportunities for them to play at this time."
Sources told ESPN's Mark Schlabach that the Gamecocks' entire offensive staff with the exception of one coach -- interim coach Mike Bobo -- would have been unable to coach in the game because of positive coronavirus cases and contact tracing. Offensive analysts and graduate assistants were also unavailable.
South Carolina (2-8) was able to get through the regular season without any disruptions in the schedule. Bobo was scheduled to coach the Gamecocks in the game in place of Will Muschamp, who parted with the program in November.
Shane Beamer was hired as South Carolina's new head coach earlier this month.