NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ – The COVID-19 pandemic could wreak havoc with the New Brunswick High School football team’s schedule for a second time this season – even though New Jersey teams are playing a truncated six-game schedule.

Athletic Director Tom Stead is exploring backup plans in the event Monroe cannot play Friday, Nov. 6.

The Falcons are scheduled to host New Brunswick, but their players are in quarantine after a positive COVID-19 test. Monroe was forced to cancel Friday’s game against South Brunswick and won't be able to play Oct. 30 game against East Brunswick.

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Stead said it’s unclear if Monroe will be able to play because the team will be allowed to return to the practice field just two days before facing the Zebras.

Stead said he would look for another opponent if Monroe is not able to play.

He already had to find a late replacement after Piscataway’s Board of Education voted to cancel its fall sports programs.

He was able to schedule a game with Immaculata, a school based in Somerville. The Zebras beat the Spartans, 29-12, in their home opener at Memorial Stadium.

The good news is that there could be several other teams also looking for an opponent.

According to an nj.com report, about 40 programs are in shutdown mode, including Monroe.

Coincidentally, Immaculata’s athletes are in the second week of a shutdown, although athletic director Tom Gambino has not confirmed why.

New Brunswick is off to a 2-2 start after a 20-7 victory over Franklin on Saturday. With the season shortened by the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association due to an abundance of caution, each team is scheduled to play six games.

The Zebras are scheduled to play host to Sayreville on Friday at 7 p.m.