Terminal screens list flight departure status Terminal screens list flight departure status at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport where delays and cancellations are stranding passengers on Monday, Dec. 26, 2022. Airport Delays 6

If you are traveling for the holiday season, we don’t need to tell you that it has been absolute chaos out there as mass delays and cancellations have had a huge impact on how people have been able to get around. That includes college football teams, officials, families, and fans traveling for bowl games.

Southwest Airlines has been the main culprit, canceling thousands of flights this week as it recovers from last week’s winter storm that affected much of the country. Over 2,900 U.S. flights were canceled and more than 2,400 others were delayed on Tuesday alone, according to FlightAware, and most of them were Southwest flights.

The cancellations and delays have led to some people doing some wild things to ensure they get to their bowl games.

Take the parents of Clemson quarterback Cade Klubnik, for example. Their flight out of Austin, Texas was canceled. So, according to The Athletic’s David Ubben, they “picked up a rental car at 10 p.m., drove overnight, and are currently in the middle of a 20-hour drive across the country to Miami for the Orange Bowl, their son’s first college start.”

Olivia Whitmire, the sports director for WHNT in Alabama, said that when her flight was canceled, her parents drove almost nine hours from Fort Worth, Texas to pick her up and get her to the Sugar Bowl so she could cover the Crimson Tide.

Speaking with KTSM in El Paso, UTEP basketball coach Joe Golding said he saw Pitt football players Samuel Okunlola, Jake Frantl, and Hudson Primus waiting in the rental car line and decided to drive them to the Sun Bowl.

“There wasn’t hardly any rental cars left,” Golding said. “As we’re in the rental car line, I see these three guys with Pitt bags on and they start talking about playing in the Sun Bowl and having to get to El Paso. There wasn’t any cars left, so I was like, ‘If we can find a big enough car, I’ll take you guys home.'”

And the list of media people saying that their flight was canceled so they’re getting in a car for a very long drive in order to cover or watch a bowl game just continues to grow.

If you’re traveling out there right now, stay safe. And if you’re trying to get to a bowl game, ask around, you never know who else desperately needs to get to an exhibition football game between two .500 teams. You might be able to split the cost of gas, at least.

[David Ubben, Olivia Whitmire]

About Sean Keeley

Along with writing for Awful Announcing and The Comeback, Sean is the Editorial Strategy Director for Comeback Media. Previously, he created the Syracuse blog Troy Nunes Is An Absolute Magician and wrote 'How To Grow An Orange: The Right Way to Brainwash Your Child Into Rooting for Syracuse.' He has also written non-Syracuse-related things for SB Nation, Curbed, and other outlets. He currently lives in Seattle where he is complaining about bagels. Send tips/comments/complaints to sean@thecomeback.com.