The Michigan Wolverines football team is the latest in the Big Ten to be dealing with CoVID-19 concerns. According to a statement from the university, "all meetings planned for Monday will commence virtually in order to continue the preparation for the team's matchup with Maryland, which is scheduled to be played on Saturday in Ann Arbor."
The news arrives after Michigan handed Penn State it's first win of the season at the Big House on Saturday, 27-17. That loss dropped the Wolverines to 0-3 at home this season and 2-4 overall, with wins over Minnesota in the opener and a 3OT win over Rutgers.
With only two weeks of regular season games left across the Big Ten, this could have a major impact on Ohio State if Michigan ends up coming down with the virus in larger quantities.
Jim Harbaugh says the virtual meetings are a day-to-day process right now.
Of course, The Ohio State Buckeyes program continues to pause as they deal with an increased number of CoVID-19 cases within the program. The Scarlet and Gray cancelled its game this past weekend at Illinois because they crossed the 7.5 percent threshold of total population positivity in their daily testing procedures. The game was not cancelled by the league though, because they only met one of the two mandates set forth by Big Ten protocol.
The Buckeyes made it clear in a news conference on Saturday with athletic director Gene Smith, head coach Ryan Day and team physician Dr. Jim Borchers that their intention was to do everything possible to play Michigan State on Saturday, Dec. 5. The status of that game is still in question.
Prior to this week, Wisconsin and Maryland were the only two other teams that had shut down their programs and been forced to cancel a game because of a CoVID outbreak. Each of those teams were unable to compete for two weeks before they got their viral outbreaks under control. But news also came out this morning that Minnesota is pausing all team activities because of a significant spike in cases and they've cancelled their game against Northwestern for Saturday.
If Ohio State (4-0) does not play either Michigan State or Michigan the next two weeks, and if the Big Ten plays at least three of the remaining scheduled 14 games across the league, the Buckeyes will not play enough games to qualify for the Big Ten championship game in Indianapolis on Dec. 19. But, they would still play a game on Dec. 19 against the West Division team that finished in the same position in the division standings that Ohio State finished in the East Division - a likely matchup with either Iowa or Wisconsin.
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