Texas confirms 13 football players have tested positive or are presumed positive for COVID-19

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As if Texas football didn’t already have enough on its off-field plate with which to deal.

June 11, Texas brought back 58 of its football players as part of a phased return of athletics to campus. Per protocol, all of the student-athletes were tested for coronavirus.  According to a release from the school two days later, two Texas football players tested positive for COVID-19.  Additionally, a third tested positive for the COVID-19 antibody.  Testing positive for the antibody means that individual likely had the coronavirus previously.

Earlier this week, it was reported that another four players tested positive.  Additionally, the reports stated, in the neighborhood of 15 players were being quarantined.  Thursday afternoon, Texas confirmed that 13 of its football players have either tested positive for COVID-19 or are presumed positive.   All of those individuals are in self-isolation.

On top of that, 10 other Texas football players are in self-quarantine based on contact tracing protocols.  All of those who have been quarantined are asymptomatic.

Finally, UT noted that it has identified a total of four football players who have tested positive for the COVID-19 antibody.

Wednesday, the NCAA Division I Council formally approved a six-week preseason model for football that will begin July 13 (for schools that start the season Sept. 5).  At that time, players will be required to participate in “summer access activities” such as weight training, conditioning and film review.  Starting July 24 and running through Aug. 6, players will be required to participate in meetings and walkthroughs.  Aug. 7 will be the start of the standard summer camp.

Texas is scheduled to open the 2020 college football season Sept. 5 vs. USF in Austin.

WVU RB Donaldson in concussion protocol, out for Baylor game

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MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (AP) West Virginia running back CJ Donaldson is in concussion protocol and will miss next week’s home game with Baylor after he was injured in a loss to Texas, coach Neal Brown said Tuesday.

Donaldson remained on the ground after he was tackled on a short gain in the third quarter of Saturday’s 38-20 loss to the Longhorns. His helmet and shoulder pads were removed and he was carted off the field on a stretcher. After the game he was cleared to travel home with the team.

“He’s recovering,” Brown said. “There is a strict return-to-play (policy) that we have to follow here and I’m zero involved in it. All I do is ask the question. They don’t even start the return-to-play until they’re symptom free.”

Donaldson, a 240-pound freshman, leads the Mountaineers with 389 rushing yards and six touchdowns, with an average of 6.9 yards per carry.

West Virginia (2-3, 0-2 Big 12 Conference) is idle this week and hosts Baylor (3-2, 1-1) next Thursday, Oct. 13.

Taulia Tagovailoa says he visited brother, Tua, over weekend

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COLLEGE PARK, Md. – Maryland quarterback Taulia Tagovailoa was able to visit his brother, Tua, last weekend after the Terrapins’ game against Michigan State, he said Tuesday in his first comments to reporters since Tua left the Miami Dolphins’ game against Cincinnati last Thursday with a frightening head injury.

Taulia played in Maryland’s win over Michigan State on Saturday but was not made available to the media afterward. He said Tuesday he was able to go to Florida and spend some time with his brother, who suffered a concussion four days after taking a hit in another game but was cleared to return.

“He’s doing good, everything’s fine,” he said. “My biggest thing was just seeing him and spending as much time as I can with him. I came back Sunday night.”

Tagovailoa said he appreciates the support for his brother.

“My brother’s my heart. He’s someone I look up to, someone I talk to every day,” he said. “It was just a hard scene for me to see that.”

Tagovailoa said he was in constant contact with his mother about his brother’s situation, and he was finally able to talk to Tua on Friday night.

“I really just wanted to go there and just spend time with my family, hug them and stuff like that,” Taulia Tagovailoa said. “But he told me he’s a big fan of us, and he’d rather watch me play on Saturday. … After that phone call, I was happy and getting back to my normal routine.”

Tagovailoa indicated that his brother’s injury didn’t make him too nervous about his own health when he took the field again.

“I guess when that happens to someone like my brother, or when anything happens to one of my family members, I don’t really think of how it will be able to affect me,” he said. “I just think of: `Is he OK? How’s he doing?”‘

Although it was a short visit to Florida, he said he and Tua made the most of their chance to be together.

“I just wanted to make sure he’s healthy and stuff, which he is,” Taulia Tagovailoa said.