Ohio State will not play this weekend.
The Buckeyes' game at Maryland, which was scheduled to be played this Saturday, has been canceled and will not be rescheduled due to an “elevated number of COVID-19 cases” within Maryland's football program.
Per the announcement from Maryland, eight Terrapins football players have tested positive for COVID-19 in the past seven days. The Terrapins have paused all football activities, a decision that was made by athletic director Damon Evans and university president Darryll Pines following a recommendation from university health officials and consultation with the Big Ten.
“There is nothing more important than the health and well-being of our student-athletes, coaches and staff,” Evans said. “We realize that this news is disappointing to all of the Maryland fans out there who were looking forward to the Terps taking on an outstanding Ohio State team, but the responsible thing for us to do is pause football activities, given the number of positive cases currently in our program.”
Maryland head coach Mike Locksley: “We're obviously extremely disappointed that we'll be unable to host Ohio State this Saturday. It was an opportunity that our team was preparing for and excited about. However, we have and always will keep our players, coaches and staffs safety at the forefront of our decision-making process. We'll continue to operate as much as we can virtually as we monitor the situation in hopes of returning to play when it's deemed safe.”
Though we are all disappointed that the OSU v. Maryland game is canceled this week, the safety of our student-athletes comes first, and we send Maryland and @TerpsFootball our best in dealing with COVID-19. https://t.co/C2nPaRfM0x— Kristina M. Johnson (@PresKMJohnson) November 11, 2020
With the cancellation, Ohio State will now have an unexpected bye week before its home game against Indiana next week. It leaves the Buckeyes with just seven games on their regular season schedule; they need to play six to be eligible for the Big Ten Championship Game.
“The health, safety and well-being of our student-athletes is our main concern,” Ohio State coach Ryan Day said in a statement. “Obviously, we are disappointed at not being able to compete this week, but I am incredibly proud of our team and the way they have handled themselves throughout this entire pandemic.
“We wish Maryland, their student-athletes and programs well as they battle through this issue.”