Connecticut women’s basketball coach, Geno Auriemma, tested positive for coronavirus at university on Sunday announced Monday, hours before the NCAA teams selected and placed in the national women’s basketball tournament.
“I feel good, but disappointed that I will not be with the team for the next few days,” Auriemma said in the University’s statement.
UConn, which is the number one spot in the country, is expected to travel to Texas on Tuesday morning, where each round of the national tournament will be held due to the coronavirus. The Huskies leave without Auriemma, who is expected to rejoin them on March 24, the day after his 67th birthday.
The Huskies will probably play two games without Auriemma in the tournament. They will face High Point, a no. 16, and if they accept that there is no upset, they will play a second round on March 23.
Auriemma, what inaugurated in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2012, leading the program in 1985; the team only completed one wish season before arriving there.
Since then, UConn has dominated and won 11 NCAA Division I titles, more than any other team, and the program has produced several WNBA stars – including Tina Charles, Maya Moore, Diana Taurasi, Sue Bird and Breanna Stewart.
The Huskies also hold the record for the longest winning streak in NCAA Division I basketball; the series reached 111 games before ending in the Final Four in 2017 with a buzz loss for Mississippi States.
“We are getting ready to do something that has never been done before,” Auriemma said in “na news conference after his team won the Big East tournament title on March 8th. ‘We are getting ready to get on a plane, fly to one site and be in the same hotel as 21 other teams. And then we’ll have to compete and try to win six games. This has never been done before. ”
Deena Casiero, director of sports medicine and the principal’s doctor, said contact tracing protocols found that no other team member had been in close contact with Auriemma since Friday to be in quarantine.
“Given the fact that we have been testing daily for the past seven days, we feel confident that we were able to capture it very early in the disease process,” Casiero said in the UConn statement.
A spokesman for the team confirmed in an email that all other people associated with the team – athletes, coaches, medical staff and other officials – were released to travel to Texas on time because they had tested negative since then.
Auriemma has no symptoms and is isolated at home, the university said. He received his second dose of coronavirus vaccine on March 10. It can take up to a few weeks before a vaccine provides immunity, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.