Ohio State coach Ryan Day has tested positive for COVID-19, the school announced on Friday.
Day, 41, is in isolation, and assistant head coach/defensive line coach Larry Johnson will serve as interim coach for the Buckeyes’ game against Illinois on Saturday.
“At this time the Department of Athletics can confirm an increased number of positive tests this week for the coronavirus. This is in contrast to testing throughout the season, when Ohio State had consistently recorded nearly 0% positivity since Aug. 11. The increased number does not reach the threshold for Ohio State to have to cancel the game this week, according to Big Ten Conference protocols,” the Buckeyes said in a statement.
“Because of the additional PCR testing taking place today, the team will not fly to Champaign this evening, but will instead fly to the game Saturday morning. The department has kept the University of Illinois and the Big Ten Conference aware of the developments.”
Ohio State athletic director Gene Smith said in the statement that Day “is doing physically well.”
Reports surfaced on Wednesday night that the Buckeyes were dealing with an unknown number of positive COVID-19 cases. According to Cleveland.com’s Nathan Baird, “the tests and contact tracing affected players, coaches and support staff.”
Ohio State did not release its status report on Friday morning but said it will do so at 10 a.m. ET on Saturday morning.
The Big Ten requires players that test positive for the virus to sit out of competition for a minimum of 21 days. Coaches are only required to isolate for a minimum of 10 days and must be symptom-free and fever-free for at least 24 hours before returning.
Day is among a large group of college football coaches who have tested positive for COVID-19 this season, including Alabama’s Nick Saban. The Crimson Tide announced on Wednesday that Saban was exhibiting mild symptoms and will miss this weekend’s game against Auburn.
Kickoff for Ohio State-Illinois is set for noon ET.