Oklahoma State Hoops' 2020-21 Schedule "Is a Fluid Situation"
STILLWATER – Oklahoma State released its conference slate of games earlier in the week and things kick off for the Pokes on Dec. 16 at home against TCU. As for the non-conference slate, all but one spot is filled, but as we’ve seen with college football, the entire 2020-21 college basketball schedule is very fluid.
The Cowboys are set to begin the 2020-21 season in the Golden Window tournament on Nov. 25 in Lincoln, NE. Game details and the other teams have yet to be announced, but even that is being considered fluid. ESPN was set to hold a bubble in Orlando to start the season, but that event was canceled due to challenges surrounding the testing protocols.
“Everything has a residual effect on everything,” head coach Mike Boynton said on Wednesday. “I just think that’s what it is. You got teams trying to pivot and find out what the next best options are. I’m not organizing the event, so I don’t know all the specifics of how that’s manifested itself. But we’re certainly trying to monitor it as closely as possible to see what can be most beneficial for our program.
“The scheduling is a fluid situation and probably will be even as we get into it. I swear, I can envision a scenario where we’re supposed to play a game on Friday, and I tell you on Monday that we’re planning for it and by Thursday, we’re putting out a release that something’s happening. That’s just where we are unfortunately.”
Another example of scheduling hurdles would be the Cowboys’ Dec. 1 Big 12/Big East Battle opponent Marquette. The Golden Eagles have been on lockdown for the past week due to COVID-19 precautions and no one’s sure when things will start back up. Both the men’s a women’s programs had one positive test each and as a result, 45 players and staff will be in quarantine for 14 days beginning on Oct. 19.
Oklahoma State has done a great job of keeping its players, coaches and staff healthy and safe since players started arriving back on campus the first week of June. As of Sunday, Oct. 25, the athletic department has reported only 128 cumulative positive cases across all sports on campus and were in the second-straight week of reporting zero active cases.
As we enter into the start of the season and on into conference play, situation will arise across the country and throughout the conference and Oklahoma State will be forced to call audibles. But coach Boynton mentioned all they can do is focus on what’s right in front of them and on getting better each day.
“Whatever the schedule ends up being before we start, it’s very likely to end up changing as we go along,” Boynton said. “So, what we’re going to do is focus on the day-to-day. We are excited about the opportunity to continue to work with these guys; they’ve shown great attitudes and tremendous improvement in my mind through 10 practices. So, what we’re focused on is not what the schedule is, but what are we doing everyday to maximize our ability as a group. However, the schedule ends up playing itself out once we can start playing those games, we’ll take it as we come.”