The Michigan Wolverines and Ohio State Buckeyes were scheduled to meet in Columbus on Saturday, but The Game was up in the air between the two teams as Michigan attempted to push through a COVID-19 outbreak within the program.
It is now officially canceled with Chris Balas of The Wolverine reporting the news first.
Here is the statement from Michigan:
The University of Michigan Athletic Department announced Tuesday (Dec. 8) that an increasing number of positive COVID-19 cases and student-athletes in quarantine over the past week will result in the cancellation of Saturday’s scheduled game at Ohio State. This decision was made after conversations with medical experts, health department officials and university administration.
“The number of positive tests has continued to trend in an upward direction over the last seven days,” said Warde Manuel, U-M’s Donald R. Shepherd Director of Athletics. “We have not been cleared to participate in practice at this time. Unfortunately, we will not be able to field a team due to COVID-19 positives and the associated quarantining required of close contact individuals. This decision is disappointing for our team and coaches but their health and safety is paramount, and it will always come first in our decision-making.”
Michigan will continue daily testing with hopes of getting back on the practice field when cleared by medical professionals. The Big Ten will hold its Championship Week of games on Dec. 18-19.
The word out of Ann Arbor early Tuesday was that the team is still doing everything it could to get ready for Saturday despite the positive cases and injuries within the program. Head coach Jim Harbaugh and a handful of players were originally scheduled to meet with the media on Tuesday afternoon after rescheduling Monday’s availability.
That was canceled about an hour before the Zoom call was set to begin with a statement from the program saying that the team would remain in limited workouts on Tuesday.
We’ll have more on this as it develops.