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Ohio State Names Head Coach In Ryan Day’s Absence

Ryan Day on the field before an Ohio State game.

COLUMBUS, OH - OCTOBER 24: Head Coach Ryan Day of the Ohio State Buckeyes and his team warm up before their game against the Nebraska Cornhuskers at Ohio Stadium on October 24, 2020 in Columbus, Ohio. (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)

Ohio State head coach Ryan Day tested positive for COVID-19 earlier on Friday. He becomes the second high-profile Power Five coach to come down with the virus just this week, following Nick Saban's positive test.

According to Bruce Feldman of The Athletic, Day is now in isolation and will not travel to the team's game against Illinois this weekend. He also won't coach the team this week.

With Day out, Ohio State promoted an assistant to take over until their head coach returns and is healthy.

Assistant head coach and defensive line coach Larry Johnson will serve as interim head coach of the Buckeyes on Saturday,

OhioState update: Ryan Day has tested positive. He is in isolation and will not travel to Illinois or coach the team this week. Assistant head coach/defensive line coach Larry Johnson will serve as interim head coach of the Buckeyes on Saturday.

— Bruce Feldman (@BruceFeldmanCFB) November 27, 2020

">according to Feldman.

Johnson takes over the 4-0 Buckeyes for at least this weekend, but potentially for longer. At this point, it's unclear when Day will be able to return to the team.

Although Johnson seems more than capable of taking over for the weekend, the 68-year-old has no head coaching experience. He spent over a decade at Penn State as the defensive line coach from 2000 to 2013. He's been with the Buckeyes since 2014, under both Urban Meyer and Day.

During his time at Ohio State, Johnson has developed numerous pro-level defensive linemen. Over the last five years, he's worked with Joey and Nick Bosa, as well as Chase Young. All three players look like they will thrive in the NFL after their first few seasons in the league.

Thankfully, the Buckeyes won't be tested on Saturday against Illinois. The Fighting Illini come into the match-up at 2-3 and haven't had a winning season since 2010. Meanwhile, Ohio State will want to continue their undefeated season to set themselves up for the College Football Playoff.

Larry Johnson and the Buckeyes kick off against Illinois at noon ET on Saturday. The game will be on FOX Sports 1.