The buzz and anticipation before the game, the unmistakable boos of officials and opponents, and the roaring after a game-winning shot will all have to wait until next year.
In a sobering decision made by NCAA President Mark Emmert in response to the coronavirus outbreak, the men’s and women’s NCAA Division I basketball tournaments will take place behind closed doors. Only “essential staff and limited family” will be permitted.
Also, Emmert said in the statement that “Today, we will move forward and conduct championships consistent with the current information and will continue to monitor and make adjustments as needed.”
Television coverage of the event will continue as planned. CBS and Turner Sports released a joint statement late on Wednesday afternoon.
This is an unprecedented course of action for the NCAA, as it relates to March Madness. The men’s tournament starts Tuesday, March 17, in Dayton, OH. The women’s tournament starts Friday, March 20, at various campus sites across the United States. Neither athletic director Fred Glass nor head coaches Archie Miller or Teri Moren have commented specifically on the NCAA’s most recent decision.
Featured Image: Robert Deutsch / USA Today
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