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Update: Coach Kiffin addresses positive COVID-19 test on ESPN College GameDay

Update: Coach Kiffin addresses positive COVID-19 test on ESPN College GameDay

Ole Miss head coach Lane Kiffin appeared on ESPN College GameDay Saturday morning, after announcing earlier Saturday that he tested positive for COVID-19. Coach Kiffin will not be on the sidelines for the Rebels’ season opener against Louisville Monday.

On ESPN’s GameDay, Kiffin commented:

Just had some symptoms about 48 hours ago and rapid tested and got the next test back (positive) as well, so guess I have it. It’s very disappointing to get it just because we’re 100-percent vaccinated and don’t go anywhere but the office and home. But the great thing is … we’re 100-percent vaccinated, and had we not been, we’d have a lot of close contacts shut down and not playing in this game, including our quarterback (Matt Corral) – obviously I’m near him all day long.

Head coach Lane Kiffin on ESPN GameDay

Kiffin also discussed telling his players of his COVID-positive status.

“It was tough telling the players this morning, I told Matt before anyone else, but he’s got this,” he said. “He’s come a long ways and it’s time for him to step up now. He won’t have me, but I know he’ll do great.”

Game day scenario with Kiffin’s absence

Kiffin addressed how the Rebels will handle his absence. “We’ll meet all the way up till gameday and (go through) every scenario possible,” Kiffin said.

And throughout the coaching staff, everybody will have their roles and we’ll pick up where we need. We’ll communicate with the officials that way. Our guys have been trained really well in situations on what to do, so now they’re going to do it without me.”

Coach Kiffin

Kiffin previously confirmed he tested positive in a statement posted to Twitter.

“I am disappointed to confirm I have developed a break-through case Covid and will not accompany our team to Atlanta,” Lane Kiffin said. “I am so grateful to be vaccinated and experiencing only mild symptoms. So much so, I debated over being tested, but I’m relieved that I did. I’m proud of our program’s commitment to vaccination, and as a result, there are no other cases to report or team members expected to miss the game. We will continue to monitor our team closely and take responsible measures if any symptoms arise.”

We will keep you posted as to who will handle the head coaching duties in Atlanta.

About The Author

Evelyn Van Pelt

Evelyn has covered sports for over two decades, beginning her journalism career as a sports writer for a newspaper in Austin, Texas. She attended Texas A&M and majored in English. Evelyn's love for Ole Miss began when her daughter Katie attended the university on a volleyball scholarship--and continued as she watched Katie receive three degrees from Ole Miss, culminating with her Pharm D. in 2012. Evelyn, a member of the FWAA, USBWA and the NCBWA, has covered Rebel sports for numerous outlets. In addition to working for The Rebel Walk, Evelyn is a sports writer for a newspaper in Texas.

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