ESPN college football analyst Paul Finebaum has weighed in on Alabama head coach Nick Saban testing positive for COVID-19.
The Alabama football coach and his school’s athletic director, Greg Byrne, both tested positive for COVID-19 on Wednesday.
“I found out earlier this afternoon that I had tested positive for COVID-19,” Saban said in a statement on Wednesday night. “I immediately left work and isolated at home. At this time, I do not have any symptoms relative to COVID, and I have taken another PCR test to confirm my diagnosis.”
Alabama, the No. 2 team in college football, is set to take on No. 3 Georgia on Saturday night. Barring a false positive, Saban will not be with the team on Saturday night.
Finebaum weighed in on the game on SportsCenter earlier Wednesday evening:
“Not only is he the biggest coach in this league, he’s maybe the greatest coach of all time in college football,” Finebaum said, per 247Sports. “And on top of that we’re three and-a-half days away from the biggest game of the year in college football as well between Georgia and Alabama, a two-versus-three matchup. And it’s a game that many people thought he would lose, even though they’re favored in Vegas. There were a lot of people wondering after Alabama’s abysmal defensive performance (against Ole Miss): is this the first time one of Saban’s pupils will get him? He’s facing Kirby Smart, of course, and now he won’t be there. That’s a really interesting proposition: the best coach in the game will not be in the biggest game and he’s facing someone who knows every one of his moves.”
The betting line for Alabama vs. Georgia has already changed, with the Bulldogs being seen as more of a contender.
Current consensus line: UGA at Alabama (-4, 56.5)
— David Payne Purdum (@DavidPurdum) October 14, 2020
Saban has remained in contact with his team via video conferencing. He said he was still a part of Wednesday’s practice virtually.
Alabama and Georgia are set to kick off at 8 p.m. E.T. on Saturday night. The game will be on CBS.