Lee Ann Herring-Olvedo MESPORTS SOUTH
Follow her on Twitter @Misskyus2011
GAINESVILLE,FL– To say it’s been a heck of a start to the week for Coach Dan Mullen and his Florida Gators would be putting it mildly. If it wasn’t enough that Jimbo Fisher and the Texas A&M Aggies put the hurt on the Gators in down in College Station 19-17 on Saturday. They can add COVID-19 to the list of this week’s swampy forecast for Florida.
The #10 ranked Florida Gators were scheduled to face LSU this week but it has now been postponed tentatively to December 12th consistent with the SEC COVID-19 management requirements after an array of positive cases of COVID along with those now having to enter quarantine. On Tuesday, the Gators were forced to put all football activities on hold due to an outbreak of COVID cases within the Gators camp. As of now, there have been 19 confirmed positive cases amongst players, coaches, and personnel over the last few days. Tuesday the university confirmed at least an additional five cases.
Florida athletic director Scott Stricklin released the following statement, “The University of Florida football team has experienced an increase in positive COVID tests among players this week. Out of an abundance of caution, team activities are paused as of Tuesday afternoon.”
Stricklen further stated, “Head coach Dan Mullen has been in communication with football players and their parents, and I have had conversations with the Southeastern Conference office, last week’s opponent Texas A&M, and this week’s opponent LSU. These circumstances will be re-evaluated by UF Health and the athletic department’s sports medicine staff Wednesday.”
The Gators have not had any issues with Covid since the start of August despite having 21 players test positive on their return to campus late May. However, four weeks into the season they will be chomped down in the Swamp by a case of the COVID.
Despite the murky times, Gator Head Coach Dan Mullen praised his ball club and university for the way they have handled the protocol to nip this in the bud. He even went on to say and stuck to it that he would like to see more fans in the stands and the Swamped pack again and hopes the administration decided to let that happen. This comes as the Governor of Florida ruling to open and allow it.
As of Wednesday, there have been no confirmed positive cased from any of Texas A&M players, coaches, and personnel. Coach Jimbo Fishers stated players would be tested again on Thursday ahead of Saturday’s game against Mississippi State.