Tom Izzo describes current COVID situation among most difficult challenges of his career

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The Michigan State Spartans will have to wait to take on No. 24 Illinois thanks to more positive COVID-19 cases within the program.

This marks the third consecutive game that the Spartans had to call off thanks to the ongoing pandemic. Among the infected players include walk-on freshman Davis Smith, Mady Sissoko, sophomore walk-on guard Steven Izzo, and 5th year senior Joshua Langford.

along with current graduate manager Tum Tum Nairn Jr. and conditioning coach Marshall Repp.

And for head coach Tom Izzo, the players’ disappointment is matched only by his own.

“If you would have seen the disappointment in my players eyes this morning when I told them we had to postpone another game, it was a struggle,” Izzo said. “And as I look at it, if I’m losing sleep over it, just think what some of those guys are doing, because there is a true love to play the game. …

“This virus determines the timeline of everything. I don’t determine it. And, really, my doctors don’t determine it. The virus determines it.”

The Spartans have still been able to hold individual and small group workouts while they wait for the situation to be resolved.

“Is it difficult? Yeah,” Izzo said. “I’ve been through some difficult things here over the years. And this ranks right up there with one of the most difficult, because it’s unknown. I’m fighting an invisible foe. And I’m not trying to be dramatic, it just makes it a little harder.”

“If I were somebody, I’d say, ‘Well, do you think we even should have played?’” Izzo said. “I still think the safety and mental health of my players is best (with) what they’ve done. I really believe that.”

– – Quotes via Chris Solari of The Detroit Free Press Link – –