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Geno Auriemma tests positive for COVID, will miss first round of tournament

Legendary Utah coach Geno Auriemma has tested positive for COVID and will miss the first round of the NCAA tournament.
Legendary Utah coach Geno Auriemma has tested positive for COVID and will miss the first round of the NCAA tournament.
Image: Getty Images

Hours before the Women’s Basketball selection show, UConn announced that head coach Geno Auriemma tested positive for COVID-19. According to the school, the coach received a positive test result on Sunday. As far as we know, he did not come into contact with anyone since Friday, March 12. All Tier I personnel (athletes, coaches, athletic trainers, and physical therapists, medical staff, equipment staff, and officials) have tested negative.

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“I’m feeling well but disappointed that I will be away from the team for the next several days,” Auriemma said. “Fortunately, I have a great coaching staff who will lead us during my absence.”

Auriemma is scheduled to spend 10 days in isolation, meaning he’ll be back with the Huskies on March 24, at the earliest. The coach will miss UConn’s opening round, likely against a No.16 team. But the coach could travel in time for round two, which is scheduled for March 23rd and 24th.

Earlier this month, Texas Governor Greg Abbott declared the state “100 percent open” and revoked the mask mandate just in time for the women’s tournament and men’s NIT. The Huskies will travel to San Antonio tomorrow morning.

Auriemma got his second COVID vaccine on March 10, but he is still days away from the two-week, fully vaccinated threshold. “The full effect of vaccines does not occur until 14 days after our last vaccine dose,” Auriemma said. “For those of us getting [a] two-dose vaccine, that means we’re not in the clear after just one dose. My team and I need to remain vigilant in the areas of mask-wearing and social distancing as we continue this fight against COVID.”

Best of luck with that vigilance in the Lone Star State, Geno.

“This revelation is a reminder that, while there is a light at the end of the tunnel, we are not on the other side of this pandemic yet.”