The college basketball world took a hit on Monday, with Michigan State Spartans head coach Tom Izzo announcing a positive COVID-19 test.
The legendary Big Ten coach released a statement on the matter:
“This morning I tested positive for COVID-19,” stated Izzo. “Although I have some minor symptoms, I remain in good health … Technology will allow me to stay connected with my staff and our players, and I’ll have plenty of time to watch film. I’ll listen to our outstanding medical staff, and follow their directions and take all the steps necessary to return as soon as possible.”
The NCAA initially proceeded cautiously with the restart of sports due to the ongoing pandemic, but that hasn’t stopped a multitude of players and coaches across the nation from coming in contact with the virus so far. College football has had its share of COVID-19 issues, and now the college basketball season is approaching quickly with cases rapidly rising all across the country.
Michigan State is set to start its 2020-21 season on Dec. 9 against the Virginia Cavaliers in a heavyweight bout. Given there’s still a month before the start of the season, the hope is Izzo will recover in time to coach.
The Spartans finished atop the Big Ten conference during the 2019-20 season with a 14-6 record, tying both the Maryland Terrapins and Wisconsin Badgers. There was a good amount of hype surrounding that squad heading into March Madness before the sudden halt of play due to the ongoing pandemic.
Izzo has 21 straight NCAA Tournament appearances with Michigan State, and he’ll look to keep that streak alive heading into the upcoming season. The Spartans are ranked No. 13 in the first AP Top 25 poll of the year. The Big Ten is loaded this season, with three teams (Iowa, Wisconsin, Illinois) starting the year in the top 10.
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