Nebraska Coach Negative for Coronavirus After Falling Ill on Sidelines


Nebraska men's basketball coach Fred Hoiberg tested negative for the coronavirus after departing early from Wednesday night's loss to Indiana in the Big Ten Tournament because he was feeling unwell.

Hoiberg left his team's bench area with about 4 minutes remaining in the game and was taken to an Indianapolis hospital for testing, where he was diagnosed with the common cold, according to Nebraska.

Both locker rooms were closed to reporters after the game, and Nebraska players remained in their locker room for several hours while awaiting the results of Hoiberg's tests. Hoiberg, 47, was feeling sick prior to the game but decided to coach through it after he was checked out by team medical staff, the university said.

Hoiberg later expressed gratitude for the outpouring of support, and denied the charge that he acted irresponsibly by coaching while sick.

The episode came amid a flurry of coronavirus-related scares and announcements on Wednesday afternoon and evening. The NBA suspended its season indefinitely after preliminary tests were positive on Utah Jazz star Rudy Gobert. Earlier in the day, the NCAA said the men's and women's basketball tournaments would be closed to fans.

Hoiberg is in his first season as Nebraska coach, and was previously head coach at Iowa State and with the NBA's Chicago Bulls. A veteran of 10 seasons as an NBA player, Hoiberg's career ended prematurely in 2005 due to open-heart surgery to repair a life-threatening condition.

The Cornhuskers fell to 7-25 with Wednesday's loss to Indiana.