Michigan Wolverines pausing all football activities due to COVID-19 concerns
The Big Ten, much like the rest of the power conferences, continues to have its issues containing the spread of COVID-19. Michigan announced it was pausing all football activities due to virus concerns. The Wolverines’ scheduled game against Maryland has been canceled.
Michigan announced that it will be pausing football practices due to COVID-19 concerns and that its game vs. Maryland on Saturday has been canceled. pic.twitter.com/T73FrJ4rAC
— ESPN College Football (@ESPNCFB) December 2, 2020
Athletic Director Warde Manuel said the decision was made out of an abundance of concern for the student-athletes on both teams:
“The decision by our medical professionals to stop practices and cancel this Saturday’s game against Maryland was made with the health, safety and welfare of the student-athletes, coaches and staff as our utmost priority,” Manuel said, via MGoBlue.com. “We have seen an increase in the number of student-athletes unavailable to compete due to positive (COVID-19) tests and associated contact tracing due to our most recent antigen and PCR testing results.”
The Wolverines are just one of a number of Big Ten teams experiencing issues. Wisconsin has had to cancel numerous games due to COVID-19 as cases surge throughout the state.
Still, this latest cancelation could have massive ramifications for the conference title game.
Michigan will not be permitted to resume practicing until Monday. Further testing issues and complications might result in the Wolverines having to cancel the “Big Game” against Ohio State next weekend, which would thereby make the Buckeyes ineligible to play in the Big Ten title game.
Saturday’s Maryland at Michigan game canceled because of COVID issues at Michigan, sources told @Stadium. 1st report Yahoo. So if Wolverines can’t play following week vs. Ohio State, Buckeyes would be ineligible for B1G title game
— Brett McMurphy (@Brett_McMurphy) December 2, 2020
In the event Michigan-Ohio State is indeed canceled, the likeliest scenario would be the Northwestern Wildcats and Indiana Hoosiers playing for the Big Ten Championship. That probably isn’t the matchup fans anticipated when the season began.
The Wolverines will continue daily testing and hope to resume activities on Monday in the hopes of preserving a showdown with the Buckeyes next weekend.