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The Auburn Tigers football team is scheduled to begin voluntary offseason workouts Monday, but three unnamed players will not be present after testing positive for COVID-19.
“Auburn players reported back to campus on Thursday evening and were all tested for the coronavirus on Friday ahead of the commencement of voluntary offseason workouts, which are set to begin Monday,” AL.com’s Tom Green reported Sunday, adding that a university spokesman confirmed the three players were asymptomatic.
Those three players will be quarantined before rejoining the team.
Spring football was canceled March 17, among other collegiate competitions, because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Prior to the positive COVID-19 tests, athletic director Allen Greene and head coach Gus Malzahn addressed how the program will keep players safe.
“One pertinent detail regarding positive tests is that Malzahn said a plan is in place for contact tracing should a player test positive for the coronavirus in order to attempt to stamp out any potential outbreak among the team,” Green wrote June 2. “It’s also why the program plans to make sure players are only around their roommate for those first 48 hours before test results come back.”
Green added: “And we still have work to do. It’s not foolproof, right? It’s not foolproof. This virus, it’s different. But the plan that we have in place is one of the best plans I’ve seen.”
Auburn is not the first SEC school to have positive tests as campuses begin to reopen to student-athletes.
Fifty members of the Alabama Crimson Tide football team gathered for a workout last week, and at least five had positive COVID-19 tests:
The 2020 college football season is still scheduled to begin Aug. 29, but a delay or shortened season has not been ruled out.