University of Memphis pauses football program after season opener with Arkansas State due to COVID-19 outbreak

Sports

BIRMINGHAM, AL – DECEMBER 22: Patrick Taylor Jr. #6 and Brady White #3 of the Memphis Tigers celebrate after connecting on a one-yard touchdown pass against the Wake Forest Demon Deacons in the first quarter of the Birmingham Bowl at Legion Field on December 22, 2018 in Birmingham, Alabama. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)

UPDATE:

JONESBORO, Ark. — According to Jerry Scott the Associate Athletics Director for Media Relations at Arkansas State University, the football team will still be playing their game this Saturday against Kansas State.

They say they will not disclose if any players or coaches have tested positive, this has been their policy since the beginning.

Scott says this week they have tested each player and coach three times this week. Once on Sunday, once on Wednesday, and once on Friday.

Different teams require the opponents take a certain amount of tests in order to play.

For example, Kansas State requires each Arkansas State player and each coach to get tested at least three times this week to make sure they are negative before they can play on Saturday.

Original Story:

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The University of Memphis says several people connected to the Tigers football program have tested positive for COVID-19, causing the university to pause practices.

It might also affect the upcoming game against Houston next Friday.

A statement from the university is below:

“The University of Memphis has announced that a number of individuals connected with the Tigers’ football program tested positive for COVID-19. These positive tests, along with contact tracing efforts, dictate that a significant number of individuals enter quarantine in accordance with CDC guidelines.

“Due to these circumstances, the football team has paused all practice and group activities and will unfortunately not be able to participate in today’s Unity Walk hosted by the University of Memphis.

“There are no serious cases at this time, but all student-athletes and staff affected are being closely monitored. The positive tests and subsequent contact tracing indicate that the majority of cases have been primarily linked to social events outside of official football activities. 

“More detail, including the status of the game against the University of Houston scheduled for Friday, Sept. 18, will be provided early next week after consulting with the AAC COVID-19 Medical Advisory Group.” 

The Tigers kicked off their season last week in a home game against Arkansas State.

We have reached out to the Arkansas State Athletic Department for comment, but have not received a statement at this time.

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