The Buckeyes might not be out of the woods yet with CoVID-19.
According to Jeff Snook, a longtime respected journalist who’s written several books about Ohio State football but currently does not have a publishing home, the Buckeyes are dealing with some bad CoVID news. Here’s what Snook posted on his Facebook page this morning:
“Some bad news leaking from the Woody Hayes Athletic Center: At least one very prominent starter on offense and several others have tested positive and will miss Saturday’s Big Ten title game against Northwestern. I will not release the names. If the game would have to be canceled, it will not be rescheduled and Ohio State’s hopes for making the college football playoff probably would be gone.”
Furthermore, SiriusXM’s Rick Neuheisel is reporting this morning that an OSU “star wide receiver” has tested positive for CoVID, which would seem to indicate Chris Olave or Garrett Wilson. This report has not been confirmed.
At this time, it’s not believed that this weekend’s Big Ten Championship game is in jeopardy.
Ohio State is scheduled to release it’s availability report for this weekend’s game at Northwestern at approximately 10 a.m. on Friday. That is typically the case, but before the Illinois cancelled game and before the Michigan State game, the announcement of that game status report was delayed. It came out roughly an hour before kickoff for the Michigan State game two weeks ago.
Ohio State does not publicly discuss specifics around individual players and coaches medical privacy, which includes discussing specific CoVID-19 information.
The Buckeyes have gotten players back on the practice field who had tested positive before the Illinois game and those players should be available for Saturday’s game. But anyone that tests positive from here on out could be in trouble.
As of now, the College Football Playoff committee says that each team must continue to adhere to its conference’s guidelines regarding CoVID-19. That means if an Ohio State player tests positive, they must sit out 21 days.
But Snook is also reporting that rule may be changed and could benefit Ohio State.
“One more thing on whatever Ohio State player tests positive this week and would miss the Big 10 championship game Saturday, and this is good news, I am told the conference’s Covid protocol of missing 21 days may not apply since the BIG season would be concluded and the rule will be revisited – and they may be eligible to return to play in the College Football Playoff football semifinals on New Year’s Day in either the Rose or Sugar Bowls. Given an Ohio State win Saturday and berth as one of the four teams obviously. The Big 12, ACC and SEC have required players who test positive to miss 10 days this season.”
21 days from today is January 7, which is six days after the national semifinals are scheduled to be played on New Years Day.
This story will be updated if more information becomes available.
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