Cal football: Bears set to play Arizona, but details unknown after COVID test

Cal is scheduled to host Arizona in the Pac-12’s final week of conference play, but there’s still much to be determined after the Bears received a positive coronavirus test Saturday.

The conference announced the matchup Sunday morning along with the rest of its Week 7 slate. Cal-Arizona is the only game without a time, date or television designation yet — a nod to the fluid situation as the Bears (1-3) go through contact tracing and additional testing.

Cal’s game set for Saturday afternoon at Washington State was called off after the positive test, making the Bears the first Pac-12 team to travel to an opponent’s location, only to have the game canceled.

The Bears returned to the Bay Area Saturday. Their availability will likely be determined by the city of Berkeley’s public health department. While the CDC has relaxed some quarantine guidelines in instances of continued negative tests, the standard set forth earlier this season by Berkeley officials had been two weeks of quarantine for close contacts of someone who’s tested positive.

College football writer Bruce Feldman reported Saturday that contact tracing left the Bears with just two available defensive linemen against Washington State, necessitating the cancellation after a player in that position group tested positive.

Saturday’s canceled game was the third this season for the Bears, though they were able to schedule a Sunday game with UCLA after their Week 2 date with Arizona State was canceled. They lost their first three games of the season before upsetting No. 21 Oregon last week.

Cal is not the only team dealing with some level of upheaval: Arizona (0-5) fired head coach Kevin Sumlin Saturday after the Wildcats suffered an embarrassing 70-7 loss in their Territorial Cup game against in-state rival Arizona State. Defensive coordinator Paul Rhoads will serve as Arizona’s interim coach.

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