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Saban gets 3rd negative test, can coach vs. UGA

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Alabama coach Nick Saban has been cleared to coach in Saturday’s game against No. 3 Georgia following a third negative COVID-19 test Saturday, the school announced.

Alabama team physician Dr. Jimmy Robinson said in a statement that Saban, who turns 69 later this month, had negative tests Thursday, Friday and Saturday following an initial positive test Wednesday.

The school added that two additional tests, from Thursday and Friday, were found to be negative at a separate lab.

“Due to the fact that Coach Saban has remained completely symptom-free and had five negative PCR tests, split between two separate labs, the initial test from Wednesday is considered a false positive under the SEC protocols,” Robinson said. “… In accordance with the SEC Return to Activity and Medical Guidance Task Force Protocol and with the approval of The University of Alabama System Health and Safety Task Force, Coach Saban is medically cleared to safely return to activity effective immediately.”

Saturday’s test was flown to an SEC-approved lab in Mobile, Alabama, for a faster turnaround time. The school said the initial positive test came from an outside lab that the school uses to supplement the SEC’s mandated testing.

Under SEC protocols, the initial positive test on Wednesday is now considered a false positive after the three consecutive negative tests. That allows him to coach the No. 2 Crimson Tide in Saturday night’s nationally televised game against Georgia at Bryant-Denny Stadium.

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Augusta National to host College GameDay during Masters

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ESPN’s College GameDay Built By the Home Depot show has originated from dozens of college campuses across the country since 1993.

On Saturday, Nov. 14, the show will combine two of sport’s greatest traditions — college football and the Masters.

ESPN announced on Tuesday that College GameDay will originate from Augusta National Golf Club, which is hosting the postponed Masters Tournament next month, Nov. 12-15.

Top matchups that day are No. 9 Wisconsin at No. 13 Michigan and No. 2 Alabama at LSU.

“Any time College GameDay travels to a new destination, it’s special, and the opportunity to be on the grounds of Augusta National Golf Club during the Masters is extraordinary,” said Jimmy Pitaro, chairman, ESPN and Sports Content. “As this iconic event coincides with the college football season for the first time, we look forward to getting fans ready for a football Saturday while also showcasing the Masters and the greatest golfers in the world.”

Longtime ESPN hosts Rece Davis, Lee Corso, Kirk Herbstreit, Desmond Howard and others will broadcast from the par-3 course from 9 a.m. to noon ET.

In its 13th year at the Masters, ESPN will once again televise the first and second rounds, Nov. 12-13, from 1 to 5:30 p.m. There will also be expanded coverage on ESPN+, including exclusive practice-round coverage Nov. 10-11.

Golf fans will also be able to watch featured holes coverage on ESPN+ on Nos. 4, 5 and 6 in each of the four rounds of the Masters.

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Follow live: Bayern Munich

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Lakers’ Green: Expect vets to rest if Dec. 22 start

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With the Los Angeles Lakers just coming off having won the NBA championship on Oct. 11, Danny Green doesn’t expect LeBron James and some of his other veteran teammates to be on the floor every night if the new season begins on Dec. 22.

“If we start in December, I think most guys [are like], ‘I’m not going to be there,'” Green told The Ringer NBA Show podcast on Monday. “If I had to guess, because we have a lot of vets on our team, it’s not like we have a lot of young guys or rookies … to have that quick of a restart, I wouldn’t expect see [LeBron] there. I wouldn’t expect to see him probably for the first month of the season. He’ll probably be working out with us … but I just don’t expect guys to want to be there, or show up willingly.

“I think at this moment, and it might be different in two weeks when guys are like, ‘All right, I’m gonna get back in the gym, start working out.’ When we get back in the gym, it’s not right to basketball. It’s, ‘All right, let me start getting into shape’ — lifting a little bit, start running around a little bit. Then I’ll pick up a ball.”

The NBA shared plans for a pre-Christmas Day start and a 72-game regular-season schedule in a call with the league’s board of governors last Friday, and the league plans to move quickly to complete negotiations with the National Basketball Players Association to implement the plan, sources told ESPN.

Other changes include a play-in tournament and the likelihood of no All-Star Game or All-Star Weekend in Indianapolis, sources said. The league is considering a two-week break at the midway point of the season, sources said.

James, who turns 36 on Dec. 30, has not commented on the league’s plans.

Green, 33, wasn’t the only Lakers player to suggest that they would rest by either sitting out games or playing fewer minutes if a late December start date is approved.

“The show will go on, just don’t cry a river when stars sit out TV games … esp Top teams that played a longer full season,” Jared Dudley, who is a 35-year-old free agent after winning a ring with the Lakers, tweeted Monday.

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