Alabama-LSU football game postponed due to COVID-19

Cecil Hurt
The Tuscaloosa News
LSU coach Ed Orgeron, left, and Alabama coach Nick Saban shake hands prior to their teams' game in 2017.

The Alabama at LSU football game, scheduled for Saturday, has been postponed due to the impact of COVID-19 on the LSU team, the SEC announced Tuesday.

The league cited "a combination of positive tests, contact tracing and subsequent quarantining of individuals within the LSU" program. This weekend's Tennessee-Texas A&M game has also been postponed for similar issues within the Texas A&M program.

“While it is unfortunate to have multiple postponements in the same week, we began the season with the understanding interruptions to the schedule were possible and we have remained focused throughout the season on the health of everyone around our programs,” said SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey in a statement.  “We must remain vigilant, within our programs and in our communities, to prevent the spread of the virus and to manage activities that contribute to these interruptions.”

It was announced Monday that the Auburn at Mississippi State game this weekend had been postponed due to positive tests and subsequent quarantining of individuals within the Mississippi State football program.

The Auburn-Mississippi State and Texas A&M-Tennessee games have been tentatively rescheduled for Dec. 12, the league said. Because LSU already has a game tentatively set for that date, no tentative date has been set for the Alabama-LSU game.

The league release said Dec. 19, the date of the SEC Championship Game, could also be used as a playing date for rescheduled games, although No. 1-ranked Alabama has aspirations of playing in the league title game.

LSU reported multiple players with COVID-19 and multiple players in quarantine Monday.  

Alabama and LSU were scheduled to play at 5 p.m. Saturday in a game televised nationally on CBS. 

LSU was off last weekend, as was Alabama.

All SEC schools test for COVID-19 three times a week, usually on Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday.

The SEC's rules concerning COVID-19 postponements state that member schools must have at least 53 scholarship players available, including one quarterback, four defensive linemen, four defensive backs and seven offensive linemen with a center, to play. But if a school does not meet those requirements, it can still opt to play. A team can also ask for a game be postponed for "compelling reasons."

Alabama's next scheduled game is now Saturday, Nov. 21, at home against Kentucky.

Reach Cecil Hurt at cecil@tidesports.com or via Twitter @cecilhurt