On Friday, just as the team was preparing to take off for northern California, Washington State football learned that they would not meet roster minimums to play against Stanford last weekend. After the news was announced, WSU Director of Athletics Pat Chun told the media that nine players had either tested positive for COVID-19 or had close contact with a teammate who did.
Two days later, the Pac-12 announced that WSU’s next game, scheduled for this Friday against Washington, had also been called off due to the COVID-19 outbreak. At the time, Chun released a statement, but didn’t provide an update on the situation inside of the program.
On Tuesday, for the first time since the Apple Cup was postponed, both Chun and head coach Nick Rolovich spoke publicly, with both joining team radio announcer Matt Chazanow on Rolovich’s weekly radio show.
During the show, Chun told Chazanow that the university currently has 12 student-athletes in COVID-19 protocol. It’s not really clear whether that number indicates 12 cases on the football team or 12 cases in the athletic department overall.
If there are 12 football players in COVID-19 protocol, that means that three more have been added since Chun’s Friday update. According to Pac-12 rules, players that test positive will be out at least 10-days, while players that have had close contact with a positive case have to quarantine at least 14-days. We don’t know how many players fit into each category, or when they entered protocol, but at first glance those figures could put next Friday night’s game at USC in question.
Despite the negative developments, Nick Rolovich is staying prepared for the Trojans. But, right now, the team has decided to play it safe. (h/t Theo Lawson for recapping the interview)
“We’ve asked everybody for the early part of the week, let’s get some negative testing, let’s get this thing under control a little bit, let’s see how far it spread before we do anything together,” Rolovich said. “I know we had a couple days of negatives and really it’s getting an early start at USC at this point.”
Pat Chun: Twelve Washington State athletes 'in some kind of COVID protocol' | The Spokesman-Review
Three more Washington State athletes have been placed in COVID-19 protocol since Friday, when athletic director Pat Chun spoke with reporters on a Zoom call in the immediate wake of the Cougars' football game against Stanford being canceled.
California curfew moves up start time of Washington State-USC game | The Spokesman-Review
With the introduction of a 10 p.m. curfew in California, the kickoff time for the Dec. 4 game between Washington State and USC has been moved up by a half-hour.
Pac-12 finalizes dates for men's basketball schedule; tipoff time for Washington State's opener changes | The Spokesman-Review
Immediate and long-term scheduling news for Washington State’s men’s basketball team came out Tuesday, one day before the Cougars’ season opener.