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Report: Badgers QB Graham Mertz tests positive for COVID-19 for second time

Published: Oct. 27, 2020 at 12:14 PM CDT|Updated: Oct. 27, 2020 at 12:21 PM CDT
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - University of Wisconsin quarterback Graham Mertz has reportedly tested positive for COVID-19 a second time, meaning he will be out for at least the next three games for the Badgers.

CBS Sports' Dennis Dodd reported the second positive test late Tuesday morning, citing an unnamed source.

Reports had surfaced Sunday saying Mertz had tested positive a first time. During a Monday news conference, Badgers head coach Paul Chryst said he would not talk about the situation.

Public Health Madison & Dane County told NBC15 News that the agency has recorded 60 total COVID-19 cases since June that were linked to the team, 57 of which involved players. That number included three that were added Tuesday after, the agency said, it “review(ed) contact tracing notes.”

According to Big Ten protocol, the earliest a student-athlete can return to game competition is 21 days following a confirmed positive test. Wisconsin’s next three games are at Nebraska on Saturday, home vs Purdue on Nov. 7 and at Michigan on Nov. 14.

Mertz earned both the Big Ten’s co-offensive player of the week and freshman of the week honors for his starting debut against the University of Illinois on Saturday.

In a record-setting debut, the Kansas-native completed 20-of-21 passes for 248 yards and five touchdowns while completing his first 17 passes of the game. He set a new university record for completion percentage at .952 and tied the program record for touchdowns in a game (5) and consecutive completions (17).

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