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Saban, AD Byrne test positive for COVID-19

Nick Saban has tested positive for COVID-19. 

The University of Alabama released a statement late Wednesday afternoon confirming that Saban and athletic director Greg Byrne both tested positive for the virus and were currently self-quarantining at their homes. The university said Saban and Byrne were the only known positive tests at this point. 

“I found out earlier this afternoon that I had tested positive for COVID-19,” Saban said in a statement. “I immediately left work and isolated at home. At this time, I do not have any symptoms relative to COVID, and I have taken another PCR test to confirm my diagnosis. I informed our team of my positive test at 2 p.m. today on a Zoom call.”

The university said Saban directed practice from home. Offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian has been placed in charge of preparation for the Crimson Tide’s top-5 matchup with Georgia in Tuscaloosa on Saturday night. 

The status of that game is unclear. The university said Saban and Byrne will follow all protocols established by the SEC for returning to work. 

The news of Saban’s positive test comes on the heels of two SEC game cancellations already this week, after Vanderbilt and Florida each discovered outbreaks. Ole Miss Head Coach Lane Kiffin said earlier today that his team also had a number of positive tests but didn’t believe their game with Arkansas on Saturday was in jeopardy. 

Saban is still set to meet with reporters via Zoom this evening.

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Josh Moon is an investigative reporter and featured columnist at the Alabama Political Reporter with years of political reporting experience in Alabama. You can email him at [email protected] or follow him on Twitter.

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