2020 ACC, Big 12 and SEC Tournaments continuing as scheduled amid coronavirus concerns

As the Ivy League announced the cancellation of its men’s and women’s basketball tournaments on Tuesday amid the growing coronavirus outbreak concerns, the ACC released a statement confirming its men’s tournament will continue as scheduled in Greensboro, North Carolina, this week. Other conference across the country also announced their respective postseason tournaments would be held with minor changes.

The college basketball postseason for the ACC features two games on Tuesday, four on Wednesday and four on Thursday before the semifinals and finals on Friday and Saturday at Greensboro Coliseum. The Big 12 tips on Wednesday along with the Big East, Big Ten, Pac-12 and SEC.

“After consultation with local and state health authorities, including the Governor and his medical staff, the Atlantic Coast Conference will hold its men’s basketball tournament as scheduled this week at the Greensboro Coliseum,” the ACC said in a statement. “As was outlined by the Governor during his press conference, high-risk individuals are discouraged from attending mass gatherings. 

“We will continue to take precautionary measures and follow the guidelines outlined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In addition, the league and the Greensboro Coliseum are taking additional proactive measures to provide a safe and clean environment for its institutions and fans.”

The Big 12 and SEC perhaps have the most substantial changes to its plans, with locker rooms closing to the media. Due to coronavirus concerns, the media will also be restricted from the court at the Big 12 Tournament as opposed to year’s past.

The ACC announced the following “proactive and response measures” that will be taken as the Tournament is set to commence on Tuesday. 

  • Frequent cleaning and sanitizing of common areas, restrooms, concessions stands, media areas, team areas;
  • Increasing the number of hand-sanitizer stations throughout FanFest and the concourse
  • Posting and distributing the CDC “Stop the Spread of Germs” information to ensure all fans are aware as they enter and move about the building;
  • Emergency Medical Services will be on scene for any medical concerns that arise.

Across the country, sanitary measures are being put in place that also includes moving media interviews to larger, less-intiminant venues, though the NCAA as of now says no cancellations are imminent.

“NCAA member schools and conferences make their own decisions regarding regular season and conference tournament play,” said NCAA president Mark Emmert on Tuesday. “As we have stated, we will make decisions on our events based on the best, most current public health guidance available. Neither the NCAA COVID-19 advisory panel, made up of leading public health and infectious disease experts in America, nor the CDC or local health officials have advised against holding sporting events. In the event circumstances change, we will make decisions accordingly.”               

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