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Baylor Basketball

NCAA president Mark Emmert confirms no public attendance at March Madness

March 11, 2020

Wednesday, March 11, 2020 3:44 p.m. CT Update: NCAA president Mark Emmert confirms no public attendance at March Madness

“The NCAA continues to assess the impact of COVID-19 in consultation with public health officials and our COVID-19 advisory panel. Based on their advice and my discussions with the NCAA Board of Governors, I have made the decision to conduct our upcoming championship events, including the Division I men’s and women’s basketball tournaments, with only essential staff and limited family attendance. While I understand how disappointing this is for all fans of our sports, my decision is based on the current understanding of how COVID-19 is progressing in the United States. This decision is in the best interest of public health, including that of coaches, administrators, fans and, most importantly, our student-athletes. We recognize the opportunity to compete in an NCAA national championship is an experience of a lifetime for the students and their families. Today, we will move forward and conduct championships consistent with the current information and will continue to monitor and make adjustments as needed.”

Wednesday, March 11, 2020 3:30 p.m CT Update

According to a public statement by the NCAA on Wednesday afternoon, an advisory board has suggested closing the NCAA men’s and women’s basketball tournaments to the public. 

Below is the full release by the NCAA:

“The NCAA COVID-19 Advisory Panel recognizes the fluidity of COVID-19 and its impact on hosting events in a public space. COVID-19 is spreading rapidly in the United States, and behavioral risk mitigation strategies are the best option for slowing the spread of this disease. This is especially important because mildly symptomatic individuals can transmit COVID-19. Given these considerations, coupled with a more unfavorable outcome of COVID-19 in older adults – especially those with underlying chronic medical conditions – we recommend against sporting events open to the public. We do believe sport events can take place with only essential personnel and limited family attendance, and this protects our players, employees, and fans.”

Baylor’s men’s and women’s teams are projected to be a No. 1-seed in the NCAA brackets that will be released following the conclusion of the Big 12 Tournaments in Kansas City. 

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