Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney announced following his team’s 34-28 win over Boston College on Saturday at Death Valley that Trevor Lawrence will not be available to play in the top-ranked Tigers’ game at Notre Dame in South Bend next week due to COVID-19.
Of course, Clemson’s star quarterback tested positive for the coronavirus on Thursday and thus has to be in isolation for a minimum of 10 days per ACC protocols.
According to the conference’s return to play protocols, Lawrence also has to pass a series of cardiac exams, which Swinney said will not allow him to return in time for the Nov. 7 contest against the Fighting Irish.
“Trevor will not be able to play. I’ll go ahead and get that out there,” Swinney said. “He’s doing great. Zoomed with the team last night, I talked to him this morning. He feels like he could play today, so he’s doing well.
“But obviously there’s a protocol in place. So, he will be out in time to play, but then you have the cardiac part of it that you have to kind of ramp back up. Even if he feels great and could probably go play, he’s not allowed to do that simply because of the protocol that’s in place, and that’s put in place to make sure he can try to play safely. So, the cardiac piece – you have the 10 days, then you have the cardiac part, so he won’t be able to get through that in time to play next week.”
Swinney is hopeful Lawrence will be able to get back on the field for the Tigers’ Nov. 21 game at Florida State following their open date on Nov. 14.
“Hopefully everything will go well and he’ll be ready to get back in practice after the Notre Dame game and be ready to get back at it versus Florida State,” Swinney said. “So, hate that for him. Hopefully he’ll be able to travel with us still and be able to help those guys on the sideline, but definitely will not be able to play in the game (vs. Notre Dame).”
Freshman quarterback D.J. Uiagalelei, who threw for 342 yards and two touchdowns while running for another score in his first career start against Boston College, will be asked to step up again vs. Notre Dame.
Swinney is glad the Tigers will have a full week of practice to prepare Uiagalelei and backup quarterback Taisun Phommachanh for the highly anticipated showdown against the Fighting Irish.
“It will be good to be able to have a whole week with D.J. and Taisun,” Swinney said, “and we’ll get them ready to go up there and build on this game here.”
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