Georgia backup quarterback JT Daniels tests positive for COVID-19 ahead of College Football Playoff semifinal
Ten days before Georgia plays in the Orange Bowl, quarterback JT Daniels has tested positive for COVID-19, the Athens Banner-Herald confirmed.
UGASports.com and Dawgs247 were among those who also reported the news. Georgia athletics did not respond to a request for comment Tuesday night.
Georgia and Michigan play in the College Football Playoff national semifinals on Dec. 31 at 7:30 p.m. in Miami Gardens in the Orange Bowl.
Daniels has served as the backup to starter Stetson Bennett since returning from a lat muscle injury that sidelined him for four games.
Redshirt freshman Carson Beck is the No. 3 quarterback and true freshman Brock Vandagriff has been working as the scout team quarterback.
The Bulldogs have been practicing on campus and will break for the Christmas holiday before flying to Miami on Dec. 26 and resuming preparations for the game in South Florida.
Bennett is 9-1 as a starter with the lone loss coming against Alabama in the SEC championship game.
Under the SEC COVID-19 policies updated in October, a player with symptoms consistent with COVID-19 must be tested, including those who have received the vaccine.
Those with symptomatic infection must isolate for 10 days from symptom onset, so when or if Daniels first had symptoms may determine whether he would be available for the Michigan game.
It is believed other quarterbacks will continue to be able to practice but will have to be tested.
Daniels’ positive test comes with a surge of positive COVID-19 cases nationally due to the omicron variant.
Professional sports leagues have had games disrupted and some college basketball programs have gone on pause. Texas A&M bowl practices have been shut down due to a COVID-19 outbreak as it prepares for the Gator Bowl, according to the Florida Times-Union.
Coach Kirby Smart last week said Georgia director of sports medicine Ron Courson ”has had a heightened awareness in the recent weeks and days. We've got a large portion of our team that's been vaccinated and continues to be diligent about that. We ask the guys that aren't to be extra-safe. We've taken some precautions around the building and to be smart. It's certainly that time of year, we had a little bout with the flu there that made me concerned as well about COVID. Here in the last couple of days, we've been on top of it and our guys are understanding that we have to be safe and cannot lose anybody at this time.”
Daniels has played in six games this season, starting against Clemson, South Carolina and Vanderbilt. He missed the UAB game in week two due to an oblique injury, but since returning, played behind Bennett against Missouri, Charleston Southern and Georgia Tech.