Team doctors have traced an outbreak of Covid-19 on the Notre Dame football team to two specific events, including a pregame meal, head coach Brian Kelly said Tuesday.
The University of Notre Dame announced Monday that 18 players had tested positive for the virus. Kelly told ESPN the team doctors are the ones who traced the infection to their game against South Florida 10 days ago.
Ahead of the September 19 blowout win, the team congregated for a pregame meal, and during the game, one player was treated for dehydration after throwing up on the sideline. That player later tested positive for coronavirus, according to Kelly.
"Throughout our entire time together, we had not had one meal where we sat down together. Everything was grab and go," Kelly told said.
"We get into our game situation where we have pregame meal together, and that cost us. Big. We had somebody who was asymptomatic, and it spread like wildfire throughout our meeting area where we were eating and then it got guys in contact tracing."
Stemming from their recent testing results, Notre Dame said Monday that 25 football players were in isolation with 14 others in quarantine.
"Shifting sands": After the sideline incident in the South Florida game, Kelly disclosed the challenges of containing the virus.
"We have to think about giving antigen tests on the sidelines for stuff that we never thought of," he said. "That's the kind of shifting sands in this whole thing, learning in-game what do you do, what don't you do."
The positive tests forced the Fighting Irish to postpone last Saturday's game against Wake Forest University. The team's next game is scheduled for October 10 against Florida State University at home in South Bend, Indiana.