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Multiple state covid records cast cloud over restarts

By Jeff Fogle  ( 

July 2, 2020 10:51 PM

Thursday was depressing for scoreboard watchers. Several states across the country set one-day records reporting new cases of the coronavirus. 

FLORIDA, hoped-for home of restarts in the NBA, WNBA, and MLS; broke 10K for the first time with 10,109 new cases. That topped the previous record 9,585 reported this past Saturday. 

To the degree there could be “good” news on a day like this, neither Orlando (NBA and MLS) nor Bradenton (WNBA) showed a large increase from the day before. While the state as a whole jumped from Wednesday’s 6,563 to 10,109…Orange County (Orlando) only rose from 560 to 584, while Manatee County (Bradenton) was only up one from 159 to 160.

GEORGIA, continued to feel the effects of proximity to an epicenter. It reported, 3,472 new cases, up more than 500 from the prior all-time high of 2,946 set the day before. 

A few months ago, combining daily totals from New York and New Jersey helped express the magnitude of an early epicenter. Doing that with Georgia and Florida show you the dramatic surge through the past month. 

Florida and Georgia Combined

*June 4: 2,365 new cases

*June 11: 2,691 new cases

*June 18: 4,089 new cases

*June 25: 6,718 new cases

*July 2: 13,581 new cases

The combined total more than doubled in the past week. Leagues must worry if exponential growth is going to continue through scheduled game action in July, August and beyond. 

SOUTH CAROLINA extended record-setting counts up the Atlantic coastline. It reported 1,782, which topped Tuesday’s prior peak of 1,755. That caused Governor Henry McMaster to warn that he wouldn’t allow high school and college football games to be played in South Carolina if counts continued to climb. You probably remember that Clemson reported several positive results during informal summer workouts. 

NORTH CAROLINA reported 1,855, slightly more than 1,846 reported on June 12. Not suggesting that Florida’s “explosion” is causing records this far north. But conditions favorable for virus spread appear to be in play in that hunk of states. 

ARKANSAS hasn’t made many headlines throughout the 2020 challenge. It set a record Thursday with 878 new cases. That’s almost 150 more than the prior record also set back on June 12. A state bordering on Texas (7,535 new cases Thursday) certainly has to worry about crossover contamination.

CALIFORNIA was Thursday’s final record setter with 9,352. That’s well above the prior peak of 7,906 reported Tuesday. Ramifications of California’s troubles will last through the rest of the calendar year. USC and UCLA have already decided to focus on online study for undergraduates this coming fall. That puts football and basketball in doubt. 

Of course, California is also sending multiple teams to Florida for various sport restarts. The LA Clippers announced Thursday they have to delay their trip because of a positive test. Los Angeles County by itself reported 2,160 new cases Thursday. Riverside (1,496) and Orange (1,249) counties reported more than 1K. 

Other Notes

*Records weren’t set in Illinois (869) and Ohio (831), but government officials in both states issued stricter guidelines for wearing masks. And, Chicago went so far as to direct people entering the city to self-quarantine for 14 days if arriving from heavily affected states. That includes Nevada…which suggests that tourists considering a visit to Las Vegas would have to self-quarantine for two weeks after returning home. (Nevada’s rate of transmission is dropping, but still leads the nation at 1.43 against a target of 1.0.) 

*Also in Chicago, the NBA is reportedly planning to use the city as a “second bubble” for use by the eight teams who weren’t invited to Orlando. League officials continue to be publicly committed to determining a champion in Orlando. Should conditions worsen in Florida, Chicago develop into a Plan B. 

*Australian Rules Football is still reacting to a lock down in the northern suburbs of Melbourne. Even a country that had seen great success in clamping down on covid is dealing with a challenging restart. Those of you handicapping the AFL can read more about Thursdays developments in this article from the New York Times, and further details about this specific resurgence from the BBC

More Stories of Interest

*Pac-12 considers moving football to spring (NBC Sports)

*Outbreak hits construction workers at Alabama’s Bryant-Denny Stadium (

*Buffalo Bills fans can’t attend home games in person (

*Women’s roller derby has a great re-start plan (Wired)

*Derek Stevens talks about casino re-openings (CNBC)

VSiN Clips/Tweets on Betting Restarts

*JVT and Mitch Moss discuss Pelicans’ pricing (Follow the Money)

*JVT and Mitch Moss discuss an NBA longshot bet (The Edge)

*Gill Alexander and Jeff Parles discuss MLB Win Total Strategy (A Numbers Game)

*Michael Lombardi looks at a Newton/Brady prop bet (Lombardi Line)

See you Saturday morning for our next report.

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