CHAMPAIGN — Illinois football has had three games affected by a pair of positive COVID-19 tests, but no contests canceled as of yet.
That apparently won't change this week despite Ohio State reportedly having multiple positive tests ahead of Saturday's 11 a.m. kickoff between the No. 3 Buckeyes (4-0) and Illini (2-3) at Memorial Stadium.
Bucknuts editor Dave Biddle reported Wednesday night that "Ohio State’s game at Illinois on Saturday is in jeopardy after some OSU players tested positive for COVID-19." This was backed up by Toledo Blade reporter Kyle Rowland, who tweeted that "the positive tests involve multiple position groups. A decision on Saturday's game at Illinois will be made Thursday."
Illini athletics spokesman Kent Brown told The News-Gazette via email Thursday that there is "no indication of a change (to the game status) at this point."
"We can’t speak on the health of the Ohio State players," Brown said. "As happens each week, especially during this environment, schools talk to each other several times each week leading up to a game in case something were to happen. If anything changes to the status of the game, we’ll certainly share that info as soon as possible."
The Buckeyes' Nov. 14 game against Maryland was canceled because of positive COVID-19 tests among the Terrapins.
Illinois quarterback Brandon Peters and backup tight end Griffin Moore tested positive after the Week 1 loss to Wisconsin and missed the next three games as a result. Multiple other Illini, including starting center Doug Kramer and backup quarterback Isaiah Williams, were held out for two games because of subsequent contact tracing.