The pandemic is not over as many are still battling COVID-19 in their own lives and as a nation the need for caution is still there, but the return of sports and the return of competition shows that the nation is healing and we are on way back to normal life.
The TicketSmarter Birmingham Bowl, which was scheduled for Friday, Jan. 1 at Legion Field will be cancelled due to an insufficient amount of teams participating in bowl season. This year's game was supposed to matchup a member from the SEC and the American Athletic Conference. The cancellation puts an end to a 14-year run of bowl games in Birmingham.
Alabama Crimson Tide head coach, Nick Saban is preparing his team to head to Arkansas for this weekend's matchup with the Razorbacks but that doesn't stop him from urging the public to be mindful of the COVID-19 pandemic. Saban tested positive in late November and was forced to miss the Auburn game but bounced back quickly and credited his recovery largely to receiving a blood plasma treatment.
Three days ahead of the annual Iron Bowl game between Alabama and Auburn, Crimson Tide head coach Nick Saban has tested positive for COVID-19, according to the Alabama Athletic department. This is the second time this season Saban has tested positive for COVID-19, however the first test resulted in a false positive diagnosis.
The SEC has already made the decision to postpone this weekend's Ole Miss and Texas A&M game due to the amount of individuals in the Texas A&M program who are in quarantine. Last week the conference had to postpone four games, leaving a bare weekend schedule and creating scheduling complications.
The SEC postponed the Auburn Tigers' game with Mississippi State due to COVID-19 issues. Mississippi State fell under the scholarship athlete threshold and therefore the game was moved. One day after the conference moved this weekend's game, Auburn has shut down its football activities due to nine players and three staff members testing positive for COVID-19.
Saban has been preparing for this week's game at home by watching practice and conducting meetings virtually through Zoom. Saban is now medically cleared to safely return to activity effective immediately.