Madison (OnFocus) – As reported by multiple media sources over the weekend, Badgers’ starting quarterback Graham Mertz tested positive for COVID-19.
As reported by Adam Rittenberg of ESPN, Mertz is not the only quarterback that reportedly has tested positive. Third string qb Chase Wold also tested positive, the Milwaukee Journal reported Monday night.
Big Ten protocols indicate both would miss a minimum of 21 days.
Wisconsin coach Paul Chryst, speaking with reporters Monday before practice, would not address Mertz’s status or that of any player regarding COVID-19 testing. Chryst said he is confident that Wisconsin can play this week’s game at Nebraska (0-1).
“The No. 1 concern for the league, and I appreciate this, was how do we best keep everyone as safe as possible regarding the virus, and then how do you manage the impacts of it when someone has it,” Chryst said. “Admittedly, they told us it was more conservative, and if that helps one person, then that’s a good thing for us. We’ve known that there was a lot of work that went through this. For us to play, if that is something that’s in the best interest of everyone involved, then I completely support it.”
In a statement issued Sunday night, Wisconsin said it “will not be releasing COVID-related testing information regarding any individual student-athlete, due to medical privacy.”
If Mertz and Wold cannot play, 4th string qb Danny Vandenboom would be next up. Vandenboom was the Gatorade Wisconsin Player of the Year in 2016. He also was first team all-state by the AP and Wisconsin Football Coaches Association. Vanden Boom led Kimberly to state titles in his junior and senior seasons, producing a 28-0 record.
“Wisconsin Athletics continues to conduct daily antigen testing for the student-athletes, coaches and selected support staff associated with the Badger football program,” the statement read. “Individuals who receive a negative antigen test result continue to participate in team activities. Individuals who receive a presumptive positive antigen test result are removed from team activities and are required to take a PCR test to confirm positivity.”
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