College basketball to resume after eight-month hiatus

Sports
College basketball to resume after eight-month hiatus

Kansas State’s Adrian Diaz streaks across the NCAA logo at midcourt during basketball practice in Pittsburgh, Wednesday, March 14, 2012. Kansas State plays against Southern Miss in an East Regional NCAA tournament second-round college basketball game on Thursday. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

March 11 was a day many Americans will remember. It was the when the World Health Organization declared the coronavirus a pandemic. That same day, the NBA suspended its regular season. It is also when President Donald Trump suspended non-essential travel between Europe and the United States.

The world was changing quickly.

Earlier in the day, the NCAA announced that its upcoming NCAA Tournament would only be played in front of a TV audience. Conference tournaments continued on that evening, but there was uncertainty on whether they would continue.

The next day, the NCAA ended the college basketball season.

On Wednesday, college basketball will resume, and in many ways, the situation around the coronavirus has not improved since that March day. On Tuesday, more than 2,000 people died from the coronavirus, and there are currently 88,000 hospitalized with COVID-19, according to the COVID Tracking Project.

Despite the challenges of playing amid a pandemic, a majority of Division I college basketball programs are set to start the season, with the first games being played on Wednesday.

It probably comes as no surprise, but the virus has already played havoc with the schedule.

Games involving six Top 25 teams have been postponed or canceled for Wednesday. The most notable matchup canceled for Wednesday is the game between No. 2 Baylor and No. 18 Arizona State. Arizona State will instead play Rhode Island.

College basketball is also working around government regulations. For New Mexico State, the basketball program picked up and moved to Arizona due to local restrictions.

While dozens of games have been scrapped for Wednesday, the majority of scheduled contests are expected to go on, but before few if any fans in attendance.

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