The university announced on July 17 that since early June it had administered 402 tests on athletes with seven positive results. Since June 15, it received one positive case among 104 tests taken by staff members.
A Michigan State spokesman told MLive.com that the two-week quarantine period began Wednesday, meaning players can reconvene on Aug. 4, three days before the Spartans begin fall camp. The current isolation mandate is required for all players, but only staff members who test positive or show symptoms must undergo a two-week quarantine, per ESPN.
The Big Ten announced earlier this month that it would move all fall sports to conference-only play. The Pac-12 follow suit the next day. Some smaller conferences have canceled fall sports altogether.
Saturday brought news that another Big Ten program will be forced to temporarily shut down football, with Rutgers announcing “we have paused all in-person team activities, quarantined our entire program and will work diligently with Rutgers medical experts, and state and local officials to determine next steps.”
The Spartans were set to begin their season Sept. 5 against conference foe Northwestern, but their next three matchups (Sept. 12 at BYU, Sept. 19 vs. Toledo and Sept. 26 vs. Miami) are canceled. Michigan State’s website no longer lists a football schedule and has “TBA” in place.
With hundreds of athletic programs spread throughout a country experiencing a rise in coronavirus cases, the viability of pulling off a college football season has been called into question.
Spartans senior offensive lineman Jordan Reid voiced his displeasure at the prospect of playing a 2020 season given the risks associated with the virus.
“Guys are testing positive across the country left and right…why is there still discussion on a season? Why is it taking so long to make a logical decision? Hmm let me guess REVENUE,” Reid tweeted Friday morning.
When issuing new guidelines last week to help its member schools prevent the spread of the coronavirus, the NCAA admitted it is facing an uphill battle in trying to undergo a fall sports season.
“Today, sadly, the data point in the wrong direction,” NCAA President Mark Emmert said in a statement. “If there is to be college sports in the fall, we need to get a much better handle on the pandemic.”
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