Ryan Day Won't Coach Ohio State vs. Michigan State If Game Is Played amid COVID

Tyler Conway@jtylerconwayFeatured ColumnistDecember 1, 2020

Ohio State head coach Ryan Day talks to his players during an NCAA college football game against Indiana, Saturday, Nov. 21, 2020, in Columbus, Ohio. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete)
Jay LaPrete/Associated Press

Ohio State's Ryan Day will not coach in Saturday's scheduled game against Michigan State after he tested positive for COVID-19 last week.

A school spokesperson told Heather Dinich of ESPN that Day cannot return to the team until Monday because of CDC protocols.

Associate head coach Larry Johnson will take over for Day if the Buckeyes play. The school was forced to cancel last week's game against Illinois amid positive tests within the program. If Ohio State cancels another contest this season, the program will be ineligible for the Big Ten title game.

Ohio State was ranked fourth in the initial College Football Playoff Top 25. The Buckeyes could be in danger of missing the playoffs if they are ineligible for the Big Ten championship. The CFP emphasizes rewarding the champions of Power Five conferences. However, given the unprecedented nature of the 2020 season, the committee will have to consider an uneven schedule landscape when deciding who plays for the national championship. 

If Ohio State only plays four or five regular-season games, the committee may favor a team with a more complete resume—even if that team has one or two losses. A one-loss Florida or Texas A&M team could play double the amount of games as Ohio State by the end of the regular season.

Ohio State athletic director Gene Smith said in a statement last week that Day is "doing well physically." It is unknown if the coach, who was a staunch advocate for playing this season despite the pandemic, is experiencing any symptoms. 

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