Most universities aren't playing college football this fall, and even for those attempting shortened seasons, it's anybody's guess if the experiment will be successful or not. And now, well before the first kickoff has taken place, the prospect of a delayed basketball tipoff could be on the table as well.
A statement from the NCAA today addresses just that possibility, that coronavirus concerns could push back opening day from its current date of November 10. Mid-September is currently being targeted for a decision.
Below, find the complete statement from NCAA Senior Vice President of Basketball Dan Gavitt.
As we prepare for the 2020-21 college basketball season, we have exercised patience and discipline in monitoring the effects of COVID-19 and making decisions regarding the season. We have learned a great deal over the course of the summer, and with health and safety being our priority, we have developed and studied contingency plans for alternatives to the scheduled Nov. 10 start date.
In the coming weeks, the NCAA Division I Men’s and Women’s Basketball Oversight Committees will take the lead with me in a collaborative process of finalizing any recommendations for consideration by the NCAA Division I Council for the start of the college basketball season. By mid-September, we will provide direction about whether the season and practice start on time or a short-term delay is necessitated by the ongoing pandemic.
We recognize that we are living and operating in an uncertain time, and it is likely that mid-September will be just the first milestone for many important decisions pertaining to the regular season and the NCAA basketball championships. While circumstances may warrant flexibility resulting in a different and perhaps imperfect season, the ultimate goal is to safely provide student-athletes and teams with a great college basketball experience.