More Big Ten games speculated to be canceled, putting title game in precarious position
Ohio State is on the edge of not having enough games played to be eligible for the Big Ten Championship Game.
But now the Buckeyes are facing another cancelation following Saturday’s game against Illinois.
Dan Patrick reported on his radio show Monday morning that a source told him that there is, “Strong speculation Northwestern versus Minnesota, and Ohio State versus Michigan State games get cancelled this weekend. That would eliminate Ohio State from the conference championship, so they will be desperate, but a high number of players will be missing.”
Players who test positive have a 10-day isolation period followed by a 10-day return-to-activity period under Big Ten protocols.
“Ohio State is going to try to play, even if they’re down their top guys,” Patrick relayed his source saying.
On Sunday, the Associated Press reported that if Ohio State (4-0) cannot play its final 2 regular-season games it would likely not reach the minimum number (6) required to be eligible for the Big Ten championship game. The Buckeyes had an earlier game canceled because of a COVID outbreak at Maryland.
This time Ohio State has the outbreak. According to Dr. Jim Borchers, Ohio State’s team physician, the program had virtually no positive tests this season until Wednesday’s testing. Borchers said the percentage of positive individuals among Ohio State players and staff hit one of the Big Ten’s warning “guideposts” on Friday night, leading officials to cancel Saturday’s game at Illinois.
Borchers said that benchmark was 7.5 percent of the 170 individuals deemed Tier 1 in the program, including players, coaches and staff. That means at least 13 people in the Buckeyes camp tested positive, although Borchers declined to provide specific numbers.
One of the positive tests was coach Ryan Day, who wouldn’t have been on the sideline even if the team played Illinois.
Day, his voice slightly raspy, participated in a Zoom call with the reporters Saturday and said: “I’m resting comfortably, but I have an extremely heavy heart.”
The College Football Playoff has no minimum number of games required to be eligible for selection.
From a Source: “Strong speculation Northwestern versus Minnesota, and Ohio State versus Michigan State games get cancelled this weekend. That would eliminate Ohio State from the conference championship, so they will be desperate, but a high number of players will be missing.” pic.twitter.com/fwBD9KXbKI
— Dan Patrick Show (@dpshow) November 30, 2020