REPORT: Wisconsin QB tests positive for COVID-19 for second time, Nebraska plans to play

Wisconsin quarterback Graham Mertz throws a pass during the first half of an NCAA college...
Wisconsin quarterback Graham Mertz throws a pass during the first half of an NCAA college football game against Illinois Friday, Oct. 23, 2020, in Madison, Wis. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)(Morry Gash | AP)
Published: Oct. 27, 2020 at 12:17 PM CDT|Updated: Oct. 27, 2020 at 5:01 PM CDT
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MADISON (WSAW) - University of Wisconsin starting quarterback Graham Mertz tested positive for COVID-19 over the weekend, and according to, Mertz’s second test confirmed the initial positive.

The redshirt freshman quarterback will be required to sit out 21 days per Big Ten protocol, which includes Saturday’s game vs. Nebraska.

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 in Madison 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.”

Third-string quarterback Chase Wolf has also reportedly tested positive for COVID-19. Fourth-string QB Danny Vanden Boom is expected to be the player who starts against Nebraska. As of Tuesday afternoon, Nebraska Communications Director Keith Mann said Nebraska is still planning on playing Saturday.

Mertz will also have to undergo extensive cardiac testing to investigate any long-term conditions that could arise from COVID-19.

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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