Memphis’ game with Houston in jeopardy after COVID-19 outbreak
The Sept. 18 contest between Memphis and Houston could be postponed or canceled due to a coronavirus outbreak inside the Memphis program, multiple outlets reported Friday.
The Commercial Appeal of Memphis reported that at least 20 people within the program tested positive for COVID-19 and are currently in a 10-day quarantine. The newspaper also reported that at least another 20 people are in quarantine due to contact tracing.
The university announced Friday afternoon that “the football team has paused all practice and group activities.” The school said there are no serious cases and that players and staff members are being closely monitored.
Memphis said it would provide more detail early next week. The school said it will also update the status of the game against visiting Houston at that time.
The Commercial Appeal reported that the increase in positive tests is believed to be tied to a bus that team members used after last Saturday’s season-opening 37-24 victory over Arkansas State.
The defensive side of the ball was particularly hard hit, according to the newspaper.
Senior cornerback Jacobi Francis, senior linebacker Thomas Pickens and junior safety La’Andre Thomas are among the defensive players who sat out against Arkansas State. It isn’t known if they are among the players to test positive for COVID-19.
Tigers coach Ryan Silverfield told reporters that players were tested three times last week prior to the Arkansas State game. Silverfield said they were also tested on Sunday, one day following the contest.
–Field Level Media