Amid reports of positive COVID-19 test, Paul Chryst 'confident' Wisconsin will play Nebraska on Saturday

Sam Cooper
·2 min read

Wisconsin head coach Paul Chryst is confident that his team will be able to take the field on Saturday at Nebraska.

Reports swirled on Sunday that a prominent player on Wisconsin had tested positive for COVID-19 over the weekend after the team’s win over Illinois on Friday night. The reports indicated that the university was waiting on additional test results in order to confirm the positive diagnosis.

According to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, UW officials are still waiting for the results of the second test as of early Monday afternoon.

In a statement released Sunday night, Wisconsin Athletics said it would not be releasing “any COVID-related testing information regarding any individual student-athlete, due to medical privacy.” The school said it would continue following Big Ten testing protocols. Chryst said Monday that he would not “and should not comment on anything” associated with UW’s COVID-19 testing. Yahoo Sports does not name a person who tests positive for COVID-19 unless they or their team confirms a positive test.

“I feel confident in everything that is happening right now,” Chryst said per the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. “I feel confident going forward this week.”

Wisconsin head coach Paul Chryst talks to his players during the first half of an NCAA college football game against Illinois Friday, Oct. 23, 2020, in Madison, Wis. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)
Wisconsin head coach Paul Chryst talks to his players during the first half of an NCAA college football game against Illinois Friday, Oct. 23, 2020, in Madison, Wis. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)

Players who test positive miss 21 days minimum

Wisconsin, like all Big Ten programs, conducts daily antigen testing for COVID-19 for athletes, coaches and staff. Any individual who tests positive on the antigen test is removed from team activities and is then required to follow up with a PCR test for confirmation.

Wisconsin said that none of its players, coaches or support staff members “recorded positive antigen tests or reported having any symptoms” on Friday before the Illinois game.

Any player that is confirmed to be positive for COVID-19 is required to miss a minimum of 21 days and undergo “comprehensive cardiac testing.”

“Following cardiac evaluation, student-athletes must receive clearance from a cardiologist designated by the university for the primary purpose of cardiac clearance for COVID-19 positive student-athletes,” the Big Ten’s policy states. “The earliest a student-athlete can return to game competition is 21 days following a COVID-19 positive diagnosis.”

According to the Journal Sentinel, Wisconsin has experienced “several false positives” since the Big Ten instituted its daily testing policy. Nebraska coach Scott Frost told reporters Monday that false positives have happened with his team, too.

If a Wisconsin player does indeed have COVID-19, he will likely miss the team’s next three games in accordance with the 21-day policy. After the game at Nebraska on Saturday, the Badgers have a Nov. 7 home game against Purdue and a Nov. 14 road game against No. 13 Michigan.

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