Lane Kiffin, the top soccer coach on the University of Mississippi, mentioned Saturday that he had examined optimistic for the coronavirus and would miss Monday evening’s recreation in opposition to the University of Louisville, the season opener for each.
Every participant and coach within the Mississippi soccer program is totally vaccinated — some extent of delight for Mr. Kiffin, 46, in current weeks — and the coach mentioned in an announcement on Saturday that he was “experiencing only mild symptoms.” He mentioned no gamers have been anticipated to overlook Monday’s recreation, which will likely be performed at a impartial web site in Atlanta, and that nobody else within the soccer program had examined optimistic.
“We will continue to monitor our team closely and take responsible measures if any symptoms arise,” he mentioned.
In an interview final month, Mr. Kiffin mentioned he and different members of the teaching workers on the college, together with some outdoors medical doctors, had spoken with gamers to attempt to ease any misgivings they may have about changing into totally vaccinated. The profitable effort at Mississippi, one in every of only a handful of main faculty packages with 100 p.c vaccination charges, was the envy of different colleges, together with within the Southeastern Conference.
“Football is competitive, coaching is competitive, the SEC is as competitive as you get, including in pro sports,” Mr. Kiffin mentioned on Aug. 23. “This is probably the first thing where it was like, ‘OK, hey, we did this,’ and people are calling us for advice — other coaches, other trainers — and we’re openly sharing that.”
Mississippi Coronavirus Map and Case Count
See the most recent charts and maps of coronavirus circumstances, deaths, hospitalizations and vaccinations in Mississippi.
But Mr. Kiffin lives and coaches in a state that has struggled mightily with the virus. Less than half of these eligible for pictures in Mississippi are totally vaccinated, and in current weeks, the state posted each day data for new circumstances and noticed its well being care system buckle. Since Aug. 14, common Covid hospitalizations have surpassed the best earlier degree of 1,547, reached simply over a 12 months in the past.
And Mr. Kiffin is much from the primary faculty coach to check optimistic and be compelled to overlook a recreation. Last 12 months, Nick Saban, the University of Alabama’s coach, missed a rivalry recreation in opposition to Auburn University, and Ryan Day of Ohio State University was absent for a recreation in opposition to Michigan State University.
Mr. Kiffin, one of many sport’s sharpest offensive minds, is getting into his second season as the top coach at Mississippi. The Rebels posted a 5-5 report final season.