The University of Michigan Athletic Department announced Tuesday that they had to cancel its annual rivalry game against the No. 3 Ohio State Buckeyes due to a COVID-19 outbreak within its football program.
In a press release, the athletic department said the decision to cancel was made after discussions with medical experts, health department officials, and university administration.
"The number of positive tests has continued to trend in an upward direction over the last seven days," said Warde Manuel, U-M's Donald R. Shepherd Director of Athletics, in the news release. "We have not been cleared to participate in practice at this time. Unfortunately, we will not be able to field a team due to COVID-19 positives and the associated quarantining required of close-contact individuals. This decision is disappointing for our team and coaches, but their health and safety are paramount, and it will always come first in our decision-making."
Michigan says it will continue to test daily "with hopes of getting back on the practice field when cleared by medical professionals."
According to the Associated Press, the Buckeyes had to cancel its Nov. 28 game against Illinois after head coach Ryan Day, other coaches, and players in the program tested positive for the coronavirus, the AP reported.
On Tuesday, the American Athletic Conference announced that the regular-season football finale between No. 7 Cincinnati and No. 18 Tulsa will not happen Saturday and won't be rescheduled.
The conference canceled the Dec. 12 game due to positive COVID-19 cases and contact tracing within the Bearcats' program.
The AAC said the two teams would play on Dec. 19 in the American Athletic Conference title game.