Bruce Weber remains in coronavirus health and safety protocols, testing positive as recently as Tuesday morning. But after contracting COVID-19 earlier this month, Tuesday marked his final day in quarantine.
Barring some unforeseen, non-COVID-related setback, he’ll be back on the sideline for Wednesday night’s home game versus TCU.
“No matter what, I’ll be back at shootaround tomorrow and at the game,” Weber, in his 10th season as Kansas State’s head coach, said in a video conference Tuesday. “I’ll be done with my 10 days.”
Weber missed the Wildcats’ last two games — losses to Texas and West Virginia, respectively — because of COVID. In addition, K-State had numerous players sit out those two contests because of active cases or contact tracing.
Against the Longhorns, the Wildcats didn’t have scholarship players Markquis Nowell, Kaosi Ezeagu, Davion Bradford, Logan Landers and walk-ons Jordan Brooks and Trey Harris.
Versus the Mountaineers, Ezeagu, Landers, Brooks and Harris again were unavailable. Sixth-year senior guard Mike McGuirl also was held out.
Weber said Tuesday that the Wildcats still have a few players who likely won’t take the court against the Horned Frogs. He declined to go into specifics. He said there are no new cases among players, however.
“After what we went through last week, that is a positive,” he said.
The coaching staff also has been affected by the virus.
Assistant Shane Southwell served as the acting head coach versus Texas; he didn’t travel to West Virginia. Associate head coach Chris Lowery has missed both games. As he did with players, Weber did not lend any insight as to which members of his staff he expects to have on hand against the Horned Frogs.
And while Weber will return to the huddle Wednesday night, he didn’t attend Monday’s practice in-person, instead meeting with his coaching staff via Zoom.
From all accounts, Weber said players have responded well to the adversity.
“Even though we went through a lot last week, they came back to practice ready to go and knowing that this is an important week and important game coming up with TCU,” he said. “(They’re) very, very focused, and I would expect a good, good showing. And again, I just hope and pray that everybody else moves forward. We’d like to get all back together and see if we can come together as a team and make a positive run.”