March Madness Tournament Canceled Over Coronavirus

2020 March Madness Tournament Canceled

We all knew it was coming, and the NCAA just made it official. The 2020 March Madness basketball tournament is canceled, as well as all the winter and spring NCAA championships.

The famous college basketball Selection Sunday show was scheduled for March 15, 2020, while the tournament was officially set to start on Thursday, March 19. The spread of the COVID-19, a.k.a coronavirus, made it impossible for the NCAA to keep the tournament afloat.

“This decision is based on the evolving COVID-19 public health threat, our ability to ensure the events do not contribute to spread of the pandemic, and the impracticality of hosting such events at any time during this academic year given ongoing decisions by other entities,” the NCAA said in a statement Thursday.

Well, That Escalated Quickly…

When the World Health Organization characterized coronavirus as a pandemic, things escalated quickly.

The NCAA announced on Wednesday the tournament will still take place, but without any fans in the arena.

After the NBA decided to take the first step canceling their season, in a very surreal move on Wednesday night, the rest of the leagues follow the action. In less than 24 hours, the NHL, MLB, and MLS canceled their seasons.

One by one, the conference tournaments in the NCAA were shutdown. Once the Power-5 decided not to play their competitions, it was a matter of time before the NCAA made the March Madness cancelation official.

Canceled Vs. Suspended Sporting Events

The NCAA and the rest of the sports leagues decided to help slow the spread of the Coronavirus as best they could. TV partners like CBS and Turner Sports already mentioned their support of the decision by the NCAA.

March Madness is the only tournament that is officially a no go. The NBA, NHL, and MLS expect to resume operations in 30 days. The MLB opening day will get delayed for two weeks, but the season should be back in play.

The first NCAA March Madness tournament dates to 1939. 2020 is the first time the tournament won’t be played.

About the Author

Alonzo Solano

Alonzo Solano

Sports Analyst and Content Writer

Alonzo is a Sports Betting Analyst and casino games enthusiast who has covered Football extensively at SBS, but don’t be surprised if you read him on other sports. He's the host of the NFL Latino TV podcast.

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