Clemson athletics’ 28 positive COVID-19 tests include many football players

Clemson athletics announced on Friday that it’s had 28 positive COVID-19 tests among 315 athletes and staff tested. That data includes a significant number of Clemson football players; 23 of the 28 athletes play football.

According to the release, Clemson has notified those with positive tests and will isolate them for a period of at least 10 days. Those who’ve been in contact with them have been asked to self-quarantine for 14 days.

The school said that most of the total cases have been asymptomatic and there’s been no hospitalization.

Clemson athletics reported an alarming number of positive COVID-19 tests. (Photo by Mike Comer/Getty Images)
Clemson athletics reported an alarming number of positive COVID-19 tests. (Photo by Mike Comer/Getty Images)

The numbers also represent an uptick in cases at the school. Last week, Clemson announced that two of the football program’s 104 players had tested positive.

Unlike last week when it released the numbers, the university declined to break those numbers down by sport. Among the 315 tests for the month of June are athletes and staff from football, men’s basketball, volleyball and both men’s and women’s soccer.

The Clemson positive tests underscore the increasingly glaring complications that schools are facing in returning to prepare to participate in games in the fall. Schools are wrestling with the realities of quarantine restrictions and figuring out ways to make a contact sport in which the players are often grouped together more socially distant.

The positive tests come at a time when complications with returning are popping up all over the country.

Texas had 13 football players test positive on Thursday. Houston football suspended voluntary workouts after it failed to test players upon returning to campus and ended up with six positive tests. SMU announced five positive tests for athletes this week. There also have been reports of positive tests at Kansas State, Alabama and Michigan.

The Los Angeles Times reported on Friday that UCLA players are seeking a “third-party health official” to ensure COVID-19 protocols are followed.

The NCAA recently laid out best practices for football to return, as the start of formal team practices begin as early as July 6 — for teams playing Week 0 — to help players get back in shape. The players back on campus now are there for voluntary workouts. Those only began once the NCAA lifted the moratorium on athletic activities on June 1.

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