Updated 3:00 p.m. CT.
LSU's game against Florida has been postponed and is tentatively rescheduled for Dec. 12 due to the Gators' significant COVID-19 outbreak, the Southeastern Conference announced on Wednesday afternoon.
Florida has sidelined 29 total players and two assistant coaches after COVID-19 testing and contact tracing, leading the team to pause all football activities. Head Coach Dan Mullen said on his weekly conference call that the two coaches tested positive.
Nineteen Florida football players have tested positive, The Alligator reported on Tuesday. Ten more players will go into mandatory quarantine after contact tracing efforts from the 19 cases, The Athletic reported on Wednesday.
Florida Athletic Director Scott Strickland said in a press conference that no cases have progressed past mild symptoms. One player who tested positive has fully recovered, he said.
Ed Orgeron said on his weekly conference call that he would not be surprised if the teams would have to reschedule the game.
"If the best thing for us is not to play," he said, "we shouldn't play."
“Our priority is the health and well-being of our student-athletes and staff,” LSU Director of Athletics Scott Woodward said. “The decision to reschedule the game comes as a result of close coordination and cooperation with the University of Florida and SEC officials, and we are in full support. It is disappointing for everyone but prudent. We wish all those at Florida who may be impacted the very best.”
SEC protocols require a team to take the field with a minimum of 53 scholarship players. The Athletic reported that "most" of the 29 Florida players who tested positive are on scholarship. According to 247sports, Florida has 87 scholarship players.
LSU-Florida is the second SEC game that was postponed this season. Missouri was scheduled to host Vanderbilt on Saturday, Oct. 17, but an outbreak among Vanderbilt players forced the game to a new date, also Dec. 12.
Ole Miss Head Coach Lane Kiffin told reporters on Wednesday that his team was "having an issue" with COVID-19. Kiffin said he still thinks the team will have enough players to play on Saturday.
After Florida's 41-38 loss to Texas A&M, Mullen called for a full capacity audience at home games in the 88,548-seat Swamp. Florida's phase three guidelines allow for stadiums to return to full capacity. On Wednesday, when his game against LSU was postponed, Mullen apologized for those remarks.
"Coaches sometimes say things that are outside of their area of expertise," Strickland said, "and they're really good at what they do. Dan [Mullen] is really good at calling ball plays."
LSU will now have an extra week to solve problems that caused its disappointing 1-2 start. Myles Brennan, who would have been doubtful for the Florida game with an injury, now has another week to get healthy.