CHARLOTTE, N.C. (The Charlotte Observer) - Georgia State announced Sunday that what were thought to be positive COVID-19 test results were actually misread, causing the Panthers' game against the Charlotte 49ers on Saturday to be postponed.
Georgia State athletics director Charlie Cobb said in a statement that the Panthers medical staff was alerted by a lab director that “human error Friday morning caused the error in test results.”
According to a statement released Sunday by Georgia State, Panthers “student-athletes and staff tested three times last week on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday, with the first two rounds producing zero positive tests. The results from Thursday’s round became available Friday afternoon, just before the team’s scheduled departure, and the positive results caused Georgia State to postpone the game out of an abundance of caution.”
In the statement, Cobb explained: "Friday afternoon, as we were loading the buses to play a football game at Charlotte, we were informed that four individuals out of 135 had tested positive for coronavirus from our third test in four days as part of our protocol to play. Through contract tracing, we identified 17 others, including one coach, who would require quarantining.
"These were our first positive test results in three weeks among our athletics programs, which since April have experienced a positivity rate of 1.7 percent. Out of an abundance of caution for the rest of our team and Charlotte, we could not in good conscience put our team on the bus and play a game.
"As part of our protocols, we tested the individuals again Friday afternoon and were informed by our lab Friday night that none tested positive. They also retested the swabs from Thursday and all tested negative as well. It was at this point that the lab director informed our medical staff that a human error Friday morning caused the error in test results.
The Panthers are scheduled to play East Carolina this coming Saturday. Charlotte, which has had two consecutive games called off due to coronavirus concerns, is at Florida Atlantic in its Conference USA opener.