Michigan State athletics see drop in positive COVID-19 cases

Chris Solari
Detroit Free Press

As Michigan State's testing increased this week, the school's positive cases of coronavirus went down.

The Spartans had 3 of 81 athletes (3.7%) who took polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests render positive results between Oct. 7 and Wednesday. That is down from the 6 of 54 (11.1%) who tested positive between Sept. 29-Oct. 6. 

All of the 12 staff members tested in the latest cycle returned negative results. 

A Michigan State staff member models the face masks the athletic department is giving to athletes after they returned to campus to prepare to begin voluntary workouts in 2020.

MSU has had 143 cases of COVID-19 among at least 2,247 tests of athletes since the beginning of June and eight positive results among more than 414 tests among staff members.

Individuals who tested positive and remain in isolation continue to have daily check-ins with athletic training staff, with additional services provided as directed by the medical and administrative staffs. Further testing and physician follow-up will be required prior to returning to any level of workouts.

More:Michigan State alters, adds COVID testing with Big Ten football's daily requirement

More:Here's Michigan State football's plan for possible COVID disruptions

On Sept. 30, MSU's football program moved to six-day-a-week antigen testing as required by the Big Ten for the upcoming season. Those near-daily results are not part of the totals. However, if a player tests positive with an antigen test, they are then sent for a PCR test and would be counted.

With that daily testing for football, team positivity rate and population positivity rate thresholds must comply with the Big Ten’s standards on a seven-day rolling average. Anything above 3.5% would put a game at risk, with results above 7.5% forcing a seven-day shutdown. MSU has not released sport-by-sport testing totals, including those for football.

The Spartans are scheduled to host Rutgers next Saturday to open the season (noon/BTN).

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