Lawrence will have cleared the 10-day isolation protocol following a positive test for COVID-19 by Thursday, Swinney said, but a battery of cardiovascular tests designed to identify symptoms of myocarditis must also be completed before Lawrence can return to the field, and that won’t be done by Saturday.
“He’s doing great. He’s in the meetings [via Zoom] and all that stuff. He’s just anxious to get out,” Swinney said of his quarterback. “There’s no way to get through that in time to play.”
The ACC’s medical advisory group requires all players who test positive to remain in isolation for a minimum of 10 days, which Swinney suggested would be concluded Thursday for Lawrence. But in order to evaluate for symptoms of myocarditis or other cardiovascular issues, a three-part testing protocol is also in place that Clemson said can take an additional two to three days. In addition, the school employs a “reacclimatization” period of at least two days to ensure players are healthy enough to return to action.
Swinney said he anticipates Lawrence will be back at practice early next week and will play against Florida State on Nov. 21.
In the meantime, Swinney said Lawrence will be an asset to freshman QB D.J. Uiagalelei on the sideline Saturday against the Irish.
“He’s an incredibly knowledgeable guy and he’s been there so he’ll be able to bring a great presence to D.J.,” Swinney said. “He’s got a great mind and great eyes, so he’s going to be Coach Lawrence.”
Swinney said he expects a tight matchup against Notre Dame, praising Irish QB Ian Book as “similar to Trevor” in his knowledge and confidence on the field, while citing Notre Dame’s defense as among the best in the country.
“You’ve got to win your matchups, got to make some plays,” Swinney said. “You’re not going to tiptoe through the lilies and beat these guys.”
Swinney said that with Tuesday’s NCAA-mandated off day, the team is still unsure whether linebacker Mike Jones Jr. and defensive tackle Tyler Davis — both starters who missed last week’s game against Boston College with injuries — will be ready to go against Notre Dame, but he said Wednesday’s practice would likely determine their availability.