Notre Dame football COVID-19 outbreak caused by pregame events

Published: Sep. 29, 2020 at 5:12 PM EDT
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SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WNDU) - 39 Notre Dame football players are out because of the coronavirus. According to ESPN, Kelly said the outbreak stemmed from two events surrounding the Sept. 19 game against South Florida: eating their pregame meal together, and one player who threw up on the sideline during the game and was treated for dehydration.

“We haven’t identified what the initial introduction the team was, still trying to sort that out,” said Dr. Mark Fox, The St. Joseph County Deputy Health Officer, who has been working closely with school officials.

“Their fundamental approach is sound,” Dr. Fox said. “We still haven’t identified what their first entrance into the team was. We have a good handle on how it spread. They’re making adjustments on how their meals are handled and in the locker room. They’ve been using it in shifts. Now they’re trying to spread out.”

Officials administered 273 tests for the team from Tuesday of last week until this past Sunday.

There were 18 positive tests.

7 of those 18 positive tests were players already in quarantine.

The Notre Dame football team has a total of 25 players in isolation.

An additional 14 are currently in quarantine.

“Coach Kelly has done a great job of reinforcing strategies in place,” Dr. Fox said. “There are still messages that need to sink in so when they’re not under the watchful eye of Kelly or team doctors. They’re doing what they can to protect themselves and keep their teammates safe.”

Dr. Fox says the timing of the bye week was a lucky break for the Irish while players quarantine for 14 days.

“Players can get back to conditioning once they complete their isolation period,” Dr. Fox said. The timing of the bye week was fortuitous so they’ll be closer to a full roster for the game on the 10th."

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