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B5Q Blogopean Union: Axe Week is about more than beating that Gopher ass in football

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It is also about compassion for our western neighbors!

NCAA Football: Wisconsin at Minnesota Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

Good morning! This is going to be a daily(ish) post that discusses the goings on of the rest of the Big Ten Conference, and the country as needed. Much like the European Union, the Big Ten is a loosely confederated group of entities that sometimes have the same goals (like free movement of people between countries or not winning national titles in football or basketball) and sometimes accept new members that they later regret (Estonia or Rutgers).

We hope that you will use this post to comment on things happening around the conference and also as a sort of daily open thread to discuss breaking news or argue about Spotted Cow (which we NO LONGER DO).

  • It is Axe Week and, as the players made crystal clear in their availability on Monday, that is a big deal around these parts. It is the most played rivalry in FBS football and is a game that is circled on the calendar all year by players, fans and alumni.

However, on Monday evening it was announced that Minnesota would not be holding practice today (Tuesday) and would conduct virtual meetings, because of “presumptive COVID-19 positive tests Monday.” Here is a full article from the Star Tribune in Minneapolis on what is going on with the Gophers.

Minnesota has said that they plan on returning to practice on Wednesday and are still preparing for the game on Saturday like normal. From the Star Tribune piece:

Fleck said in his video conference Monday that players who test positive from one of the daily antigen tests are presumed positive until follow-up PCR tests can confirm.

The Gophers are waiting for those confirmatory tests, but the athletic department decided to pause while waiting for those results. While not a Big Ten mandated shutter, the Gophers relied on their medical team for this call. It’s unclear how the team will continue if all or many of the new positive cases are confirmed.

Wisconsin obviously wants to play because, if they don’t, they will be ineligible for the Big Ten championship game unless many other games are canceled around the conference. One could argue that they’ve made themselves ineligible for the game after losing to Northwestern, but that’s neither here nor there.

But, as noted above, there are things that are bigger than college football and we at B5Q sincerely hope that no one in the Minnesota football program is sick and, if they are, they get the care they need to get better quickly.

We will keep you updated as Minnesota releases more information.