(FamilyRetirementClub.com) – If you weren’t already annoyed by the coronavirus outbreak, now you’ve got even more reason to be. The NCAA announced this week that both women’s and men’s basketball tournaments will all be canceled this month. The move comes as the world exits the “contain” phase of dealing with the coronavirus outbreak and enters the “delay” phase.
Initially, the NCAA announced it would continue with the March Madness tournaments without crowds in the audience. However, the NBA’s decision to suspend the entirety of the rest of the season pushed the NCAA to cancel all games entirely. The decision from the NBA came after Utah Jazz was diagnosed with coronavirus.
— NCAA (@NCAA) March 12, 2020
March Madness is an annual basketball tournament that has gone ahead, without fail, every year since 1982. It is one of the largest events in American sports that involves 68 teams and lasts for weeks. This will be the first time it has been canceled in its entirety.
In a statement, the NCAA said, “This decision is based on the evolving COVID-19 public health threat, our ability to ensure the events do not contribute to the spread of the pandemic and the impracticality of hosting such events at any time during the academic year given the ongoing decisions by other entities.”
The NCAA didn’t just cancel basketball games, however. Every single spring championship has been canceled over coronavirus fears, including lacrosse, baseball, and hockey.
For the men’s teams, games were expected to begin in Dayton, Ohio, on Tuesday. They would then spread out to eight other locations across the United States between Thursday and Sunday. For the women’s teams, the games would have begun on March 20, later spreading across 16 locations in total.
The spread of the coronavirus continues across Europe and the United States, posing a serious threat to the elderly and those with underlying health conditions. For young and healthypeople it often causes extreme flu-like symptoms, but for those who are vulnerable, it can be deadly.
Governments advise that people should refrain from physical contact with other people.