University of Memphis to pause football practices, activities after COVID-19 outbreak

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The University of Memphis says several people connected to the Tigers football program have tested positive for COVID-19, causing the university to pause practices.

It might also affect the upcoming game against Houston next Friday.

A statement from the university is below:

“The University of Memphis has announced that a number of individuals connected with the Tigers’ football program tested positive for COVID-19. These positive tests, along with contact tracing efforts, dictate that a significant number of individuals enter quarantine in accordance with CDC guidelines.

“Due to these circumstances, the football team has paused all practice and group activities and will unfortunately not be able to participate in today’s Unity Walk hosted by the University of Memphis.

“There are no serious cases at this time, but all student-athletes and staff affected are being closely monitored. The positive tests and subsequent contact tracing indicate that the majority of cases have been primarily linked to social events outside of official football activities. 

“More detail, including the status of the game against the University of Houston scheduled for Friday, Sept. 18, will be provided early next week after consulting with the AAC COVID-19 Medical Advisory Group.” 

Dr. Jeff Warren with the COVID-19 task force says this shows how important regular testing is if we want to have activities like football.

“We’re going to find them early before it spreads through the whole team,” Warren said. “So, this is actually a sign that their system is working. The fact that they paused everything says they’re taking it seriously.”

The Tigers defeated Arkansas State in the team’s season opener Sept. 5.

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