big ten football

Minnesota-Northwestern Football Game Canceled Over Gophers' Coronavirus Outbreak

NBCUniversal Media, LLC

Minnesota has canceled its game against Northwestern on Saturday, the second straight football cancellation for the Gophers because of a spike in their COVID-19 cases.

The decision was made by university officials Monday in consultation with the Big Ten. Since Nov. 19, Minnesota has had 47 positive cases, including 21 players and 26 staff members. Seven of those cases were reported on Monday.

"The health and safety of our student-athletes, coaches and staff continues to be our main priority," Minnesota's Director of Athletics Mark Coyle said in a statement.

"The last couple of days have shown a decrease in positive cases, but not to the point where we are able to return to competition," Coyle continued. "We are disappointed not to be able to compete against Northwestern on Saturday, but we need to continue to focus on following all CDC and MDH guidelines and slow the spread of the virus."

The Gophers paused all team-related activities six days ago. They canceled their game at Wisconsin last week.

Northwestern leads the Big Ten West Division at 5-1.

"Hoping for a quick return to full health for our friends in the Twin Cities," Northwestern's football program tweeted Monday morning.

Associated Press/NBC Chicago
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