Pitt canceled its scheduled football practice on Thursday after several players displayed “symptoms that can be associated with COVID-19,” according to a team statement.
Pitt athletic director Heather Lyke said that the team will resume practice on Friday.
“Our medical team decided it was in everyone’s best interest to temporarily pause our Thursday training camp activities so that we could test symptomatic players per our protocol,” Lyke said in a press release. “Based on negative test results received late today, it has been determined that we can safely resume practice on Friday.”
Pitt opened training camp on Aug. 7 and held five practices before pausing workouts on Thursday.
The Panthers have not publicly revealed the results of their COVID-19 testing since bringing football players back to campus in July. Thursday’s cancelation was the first time that Pitt had to pause its return to play protocol for the football team since it has been instituted.
Pitt did not immediately respond to a request for a clarification on whether the negative tests referenced by Lyke were specifically from those players that exhibited symptoms.
The Panthers and the rest of the ACC are currently slated to go forward with the 2020 season. The ACC presidents met on Thursday afternoon, and according to multiple media reports, made the decision to carry on with the season, despite cancellations from the Big Ten and Pac-12 earlier in the week.
One other ACC schools had its practices interrupted on Thursday, as Syracuse paused its practices over player concerns about the testing protocol, according to Syracuse.com.
NCAA president Mark Emmert announced on Thursday that there will not be fall NCAA championships held in 2020, though the College Football Playoff operates outside the purview of the NCAA and could still be held with teams from the ACC, Big 12 and SEC participating. Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby said on Wednesday that the CFP committee had not made a decision on how to move forward at that time.
Pitt is scheduled to start its season on Sept. 12, though the Panthers do not have an opponent for that date. They had been scheduled to host Miami University (Ohio), but that school has postponed its season to the spring along with the rest of the MAC. Pitt is still searching for a non-conference opponent for that date, a team source told Pittsburgh Sports Now.