The Wisconsin football team has announced it will pause all team-related activities for at least seven days due to an elevated number of COVID-19 cases within the Badgers program. The team’s scheduled game against Nebraska on Saturday has been cancelled. It will officially be considered a “No Contest”.
The joint decision was made by Athletic Director Barry Alvarez and UW-Madison Chancellor Rebecca Blank, in consultation with the Big Ten Conference. The game will not be rescheduled.
UW’s test positivity rate is at the threshold that forced the team to stop regular practice and competition for a minimum of seven days and then will be reassessed.
According to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, a total of 12 people within the football program had tested positive for COVID-19 in the past five days. That figure includes six players and six staff members, including head coach Paul Chryst.
“This morning I received the news that I had tested positive via a PCR test I took yesterday,” Chryst told JS beat reporter Jeff Potrykus. “I informed my staff and the team this morning and am currently isolating at home. I had not been experiencing any symptoms and feel good as of this morning.”
Redshirt freshman quarterback Graham Mertz tested positive twice for the coronavirus and wasn’t eligible to play anyway. His backup Chase Wolf also tested positive and the Badgers were preparing fourth stringer Danny Vanden Boom to start on Saturday.
Wisconsin’s next scheduled game is at home against Purdue on Nov. 7. There’s a good chance that Vanden Boom, will still be called on to make his first collegiate start if that game is played.
Athletic Director Barry Alvarez and coach Paul Chryst will meet with reporters via Zoom later today.