COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Ohio State University head football coach Ryan Day has tested positive for COVID-19, according to the school’s athletic department.
In a statement, OSU said Day is in isolation and will not travel to Illinois or coach the Buckeyes for Saturday’s game against the Fighting Illini.
“I have spoken with Coach Day and he is doing well physically,” OSU Director of Athletics Gene Smith said. “I feel terrible for Coach and for the members of the program who have been diagnosed with a positive test. Coach Day and his team have been true leaders in handling things so well throughout this pandemic. Our team wants to play this game, and we’re going to do everything we can to help make this happen. All of the decisions on the welfare of our student-athletes and staff members will continue to be guided by our medical staff.”
In addition, OSU has reported an increased number of positive coronavirus tests this week. The increase does not, however, reach the number where the Buckeyes would have to cancel Saturday’s game.
Assistant head coach/defensive line coach Larry Johnson will coach the team Saturday.
Ohio State heads to Illinois 4-0 on the season and ranked 4th in the first College Football Playoff poll. The Buckeyes have already had one game canceled due to COVID-19 this season – that was at Maryland due to positive tests in the Terrapins football program.
The football program has completed a round of point of contact daily testing Friday. All team members and Tier I coaches and support staff have undergone polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing Friday afternoon out of an “abundance of caution” to ensure everyone traveling for Saturday’s game is confirmed negative.
Due to the new round of testing, the team will not travel to Illinois until Saturday morning for a noon kickoff. The flight is scheduled to leave at 8 a.m.