Every member of the Alabama football family is counting down the seconds until Nick Saban can officially reclaim his spot on the sidelines as the team’s head coach. After testing positive for COVID-19 a week ago, Saban has been suppressed to coaching from a distance as offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian handles things in the building.
It’s been a stressful time for Saban who described feeling “helpless” during the team’s last game against Auburn which resulted in a 42-13 victory.
Luckily for the team, Saban shared that he has confidence that his time away will be ending soon as he shared another update during his Wednesday press conference.
The head coach said that he expects to be back to in-person coaching “in the very near future.”
This statement adds to his past comments which came during his teleconference earlier today where he shared that he expects to be able to coach against LSU come Saturday.
“I’m feeling great, and I’ll be evaluated by the medical staff on a daily basis,” Saban said on the call. “I still fully expect to be able to coach this game on Saturday.”
Some helpful news also broke this past week from the Center for Disease Control (CDC), recommending that people who test positive for the virus may cut the quarantine time on contract tracing to 7-10 days instead of 14.
College football and especially the SEC has felt the impact of contact tracing as it has recently had to reschedule multiple games within the conference. But if this recommendation is adopted, it could make a serious impact on whether a game can actually be played with positive tests on a team.
“I think it’s a pretty significant difference,” Saban said during the teleconference. “Everybody’s felt from the beginning that when you get quarantined, and you may not even get sick, that 14 days was a pretty long time to be quarantined. But we’ve always respected the science.
“I think now that there’s more testing, maybe they have evidence of what really is safe for the players relative to the quarantine time and the testing, the combination of the two of those things and how it affects the science. I’m no doctor, so I’m not trying to say it’s right, wrong or indifferent, but we do have a lot of respect for whatever the science is, and obviously, the people in the CDC certainly have all the information they need to make a good decision about what’s safe.”
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Patrick Dowd is a Reporter for Touchdown Alabama Magazine. You can follow him on Twitter, via Pat_Dowd77