In a page straight out of the 2020 storybook, Clemson and Florida State “mutually” agreed to postpone their Saturday conference matchup hours before kickoff, after both teams’ medical staffs could not agree to move forward with the game. The teams had been scheduled to play at noon.
According to Mike Gillespie, sports director at the ABC affiliate in Columbia, S.C., Clemson had a backup offensive lineman test positive for COVID-19.
This shouldn’t be surprising given Clemson’s previous glut of positive tests.
It was practically inevitable to happen again at some point — a pandemic is raging, after all.
Meanwhile, Clemson officials, players, and backers were chirping all morning about how disappointing it was that the game was off. They threw an awful lot of shade at Florida State for a team that allowed a player to travel who then came back positive for a test administered Friday. So … they traveled before test results came back? Cool, cool.
They should be unhappy, though maybe not because there isn’t a game to play, but that they traveled with a guy who tested positive.
Great protocols then, I guess? Both teams, per ACC protocols, were tested Friday for COVID-19 through a third party. Those results are received either the same day or the following morning, before kickoff. But why would protocol allow for travel prior to results? Isn’t the point of rapid testing to avoid that?
It doesn’t seem like the ACC thought this through.
So, basically the Tigers went through hoops, potentially exposing themselves to COVID-19 just to turn around and head hom. And if that offensive lineman traveled with the team, the Tigers could very well have an ensuing outbreak on their hands, which was pretty much the understandable concern of the Seminoles.
This is what we get for “wanting” football during a pandemic.
Slow your roll, Trevor.
The wildest part about all of this is many people on the interwebs are blaming Florida State for this postponement, alluding to the fact the team doesn’t want to play Clemson because they are 2-6. Even former South Carolina governor Nikki Haley couldn’t help herself:
But it seems like the Seminoles are actually the smart ones in this mess. Clemson’s football program has a history of COVID-19 outbreaks, and the Tigers’ loss to Notre Dame came with Lawrence sidelined by the virus. Through June, Clemson had 37 positive tests, with 14 of those positives coming the same week. It’s perplexing, since in April, Dabo Swinney said we were gonna “kick this thing in the teeth.”
So shouldn’t Swinney and his Tigers program be getting the heat for this? Instead, much of the nation seems to be focused on the on-the-field records of the two teams. As if that matters at all in a season where nearly 20 games can be wiped out in one week. Priorities.