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Lane Kiffin positive for COVID, to miss Ole Miss opener

Ole Miss Head Coach Lane Kiffin waits to be introduced in the main media room during SEC Media Days at the Hyatt Regency in Hoover, Ala., Tuesday, July 20, 2021. [Staff Photo/Gary Cosby Jr.]

Sec Media Days Ole Miss
Ole Miss Head Coach Lane Kiffin waits to be introduced in the main media room during SEC Media Days at the Hyatt Regency in Hoover, Ala., Tuesday, July 20, 2021. [Staff Photo/Gary Cosby Jr.] Sec Media Days Ole Miss

Ole Miss head coach Lane Kiffin will sit out his team’s opener against Louisville on Monday after testing positive for COVID-19.

Kiffin announced Saturday that he had a breakthrough case and had mild symptoms. The team has not given word as to who will coach in his absence.

“I am disappointed to confirm that I have developed a breakthrough case of Covid and will not accompany our team to Atlanta,” Kiffin wrote.

“I am grateful to be vaccinated and experiencing only mild symptoms. So much so, I debated over being tested, but I’m relieved that I did. I’m proud of our program’s commitment to vaccination, and as a result, there are currently no other cases to report or team members expected to miss the game.”

Kiffin, 46, declared his team 100 percent vaccinated against COVID-19 in early August.

The Rebels athletic department has made a big push for vaccination within a state that has struggled with vaccination rates, with just 39.71 percent of its population fully vaccinated, per the Coronavirus Resource Center at Johns Hopkins.

At SEC media days in July, SEC commissioner Greg Sankey warned there would be no built-in buffers this year to account for postponements due to COVID-19 cases. Instead, a team with too many ineligible players would have to forfeit games.

The SEC made that policy official earlier this week.

–Field Level Media