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Missouri/Vanderbilt postponed, Florida suspends team activities due to COVID-19

It’s only Tuesday, but it’s been quite a week in the SEC.

Mississippi State v LSU Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images

The COVID-19 pandemic has claimed its first SEC game of the season.

Monday afternoon, the conference announced that this weekend’s scheduled Missouri/Vanderbilt football game would not be played as scheduled.

The Vanderbilt at Missouri football game of October 17 has been postponed due to positive tests and subsequent quarantining of individuals within the Vanderbilt football program, consistent with Southeastern Conference COVID-19 management requirements. The game is tentatively rescheduled for December 12 in Columbia.

As noted in the statement, the postponement was a result of Vanderbilt not having enough healthy players available. Per the agreement from the SEC Return to Play Task Force, teams must have 53 scholarship athletes available.

Tuesday afternoon brought more worrisome COVID-19 news across the conference, as Florida announced it was suspending team activities as a result of a spike of positive tests

The University of Florida football team has experienced an increase in positive COVID tests among players this week. Out of an abundance of caution, team activities are paused as of Tuesday afternoon. Head coach Dan Mullen has been in communication with football players and their parents, and I have had conversations with the Southeastern Conference office, last week’s opponent Texas A&M, and this week’s opponent LSU. These circumstances will be re-evaluated by UF Health and the athletic department’s sports medicine staff Wednesday.

Mullen suggested after Florida’s loss to Texas A&M that he wanted 90,000 fans in attendance this week, an idea that was quickly shot down by school officials.