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The Latest: DePaul calls off 2 more men's basketball games

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Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved

Iowa State warms up before an NCAA college basketball game against DePaul, Sunday, Dec. 6, 2020, in Ames, Iowa. The Iowa State-DePaul was canceled due to COVID-19 protocols inside the DePaul program according to a statement from Iowa State. (AP Photo/Matthew Putney)

The Latest on the effects of the coronavirus outbreak on sports around the world:

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DePaul called off two more men’s basketball games because of positive COVID-19 tests, pushing back the start of the season until at least next week.

The Blue Demons were scheduled to play at Providence on Thursday and Butler on Monday. But with team activities paused, those Big East games were postponed and no makeup dates were announced. DePaul is scheduled to host Connecticut on Dec. 23.

DePaul has canceled or postponed 10 games. The Blue Demons were scheduled to open Nov. 25 against Western Illinois at home.

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The University at Albany women’s basketball game scheduled for Dec. 23 against Siena has been postponed.

The Saints announced a positive test Monday afternoon in their Tier 1 personnel group and subsequently paused team activities, affecting their games into next week, including against UAlbany.

The Great Danes will look to schedule a new opponent in Siena’s place.

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UNLV has canceled its home basketball game against Pepperdine on Monday after a positive COVID-19 test.

The school said it had a positive test during routine testing before the game.

UNLV also had its game against Eastern Washington last Wednesday canceled due to a positive test.

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Vanderbilt’s season finale at No. 10 Georgia has been canceled with the Commodores falling below both the number of scholarship players available and position requirements.

The game has been declared a no contest.

Vanderbilt originally was scheduled to play in Athens on Dec. 5 only to have that game postponed the day before because the Commodores couldn’t meet minimum roster requirements. Vanderbilt played, and lost, to in-state rival Tennessee 42-17 on Saturday despite having only 49 scholarship players available. Interim coach Todd Fitch had hoped to get some players back this week, but COVID-19 issues, contact tracing and opt-outs left Vanderbilt thin.

The Commodores conclude this SEC-only season at 0-9, the first winless season in program history.

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Broncos kicker Brandon McManus says he’s going on the reserve/COVID-19 list because he’s been in close contact with someone outside the team facility who has the novel coronavirus.

McManus will self-isolate at a hotel and says he hopes to play Saturday against the Buffalo Bills. He’ll have to test negative five days in a row.

If not, the Broncos have Taylor Russolino, the emergency kicker they signed to their practice squad the day after they were forced to play the Saints without any of their four quarterbacks because of COVID-19.

Russollino was 9 of 10 on field goal attempts with the XFL St. Louis BattleHawks earlier this year with a long of 58 yards.

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South Carolina men’s basketball has postponed its home game with No. 24 Clemson on Saturday night due to continuing COVID-19 issues.

The school had paused basketball activities last Tuesday and canceled its home game with Wofford scheduled for last Thursday. At the time, Gamecocks coach Frank Martin had hoped his team could resume practices on Dec. 17 and play the rivalry game with Clemson.

South Carolina held open rescheduling the annual contest with the Tigers. South Carolina’s next scheduled game is at home against South Carolina State on Dec. 23.

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The latest English Premier League tests revealed six new positive tests for COVID-19.

A total of 1,549 players and club staff were tested from Dec. 7-13. The six unnamed people who tested positive will self-isolate for 10 days.

The latest figure was the lowest recorded in the league since the start of November. In the previous round of tests, there were 14 positives.

The EPL does not reveal names or clubs.

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Wake Forest says it plans to begin holding men’s basketball practices on Sunday after a pause due to COVID-19 issues.

The school announced a schedule Monday for returning to team activities. After returning to practice, the Demon Deacons would be scheduled to play Syracuse on Dec. 30. They haven’t played since beating Longwood on Nov. 27. Four straight games have been canceled or postponed, including Wednesday’s originally scheduled opener for Atlantic Coast Conference play against No. 17 Virginia and next week’s scheduled home game with VMI.

In a statement, coach Steve Forbes said the plan allows for most players to return to practice this weekend, depending on their ability to clear all required protocols.

“No one will step on the court until our medical team says they are cleared to do so,” Forbes said.

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No. 12 Wisconsin and No. 23 Louisville have rescheduled their Big Ten/ACC Challenge men’s basketball matchup.

The two teams will face off Saturday at noon at the Kohl Center in Madison, Wisconsin.

Wisconsin initially was supposed to host Louisville on Dec. 9, but that game got postponed after Louisville announced it was pausing team-related activities due to a positive COVID-19 test and contact tracing measures within its program.

This will be only the second time that Wisconsin and Louisville have faced off in men’s basketball. Louisville won 70-53 at home in 1978.

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Attendance at Cincinnati’s Nippert Stadium will be limited to 1,500 for the American Athletic Conference championship game on Saturday between the No. 6 Bearcats and No. 20 Tulsa.

The university said it applied for a variance with the state of Ohio to increase the capacity for the game, but it was denied amid a spike in COVID-19 cases in the state.

The number will include family and friends of players and staff, bands and spirit squads, as well as a limited number of students and other guests. Tickets are being offered to students for $10.

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Washington has pulled out of the Pac-12 football championship game due to COVID-19 issues in the Huskies program, and Oregon will now play No. 13 USC in the conference title game on Friday in Los Angeles.

Washington (3-1) announced it was withdrawing from the championship game after determining the Huskies did not have at least 53 scholarship players available and did not meet minimum number of scholarship athletes at specific positions.

Washington had to cancel its game last weekend against Oregon (3-2) that would have determined the Pac-12 North champion due to COVID-19 cases in the program that caused the Huskies to pause practice in the middle of last week.

Washington team physician Dr. Kim Harmon said the program has continued to see positive cases over the past several days and says in a statement that “combined with issues with a key position group doesn’t allow for a path forward.”

Washington was named Pac-12 North champs by virtue of having a better winning percentage than Oregon.

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Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh says his team had a lot of “energy and enthusiasm” when it was cleared to practice for the first time since a COVID-19 outbreak broke out within the program.

Harbaugh says the Wolverines practiced on Sunday and would again on Monday before taking a break for final exams on Tuesday.

He says practice will continue later in the week to prepare to play at No. 18 Iowa on Saturday night. Harbaugh declines to say how many players will be unavailable to compete against the Hawkeyes, citing privacy.

Michigan’s previous two games were canceled due to 16 people within the program testing positive for the coronavirus, according to a person familiar with the situation who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the school was not releasing details of the outbreak.

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Buffalo men’s basketball coach Jim Whitesell will self-quarantine for 14 days after being in close contact with a person who has tested positive for COVID-19.

Whitesell says he has tested negative for the novel coronavirus, but is taking leave from the Mid-American Conference team to follow local health protocols. The school issued the coach’s announcement on Monday, after Whitesell coached the Bulls from the stands rather than the bench in a home-opening 81-64 win over Mercyhurst on Thursday.

Whitesell says the person who tested positive is not associated with the team or school. He will continue communicating with his staff and players remotely, while assistant Angres Thorpe takes over in Whitesell’s absence.

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