NCAA Tournament will be played without fans in attendance

Lucy Burdge
March 11, 2020 - 4:50 pm

The NCAA announced on Wednesday no fans will be allowed to attend the NCAA Tournament amid concern over coronavirus spread. 

“The NCAA continues to assess the impact of COVID-19 in consultation with public health officials and our COVID-19 advisory panel,” NCAA President Mark Emmert’s statement reads. “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.”

In a statement released Wednesday afternoon after consultations with its COVID-19 advisory panel, the NCAA said only essential staff and limited family will be permitted to attend the games. 

UMass Athletics also announced on Wednesday that the Minutemen's Hockey East quarterfinal series against Northeastern will also be played without spectators. Only credentialed institutional personnel, student-athlete family members, credentialed media crews and official team party members will be allowed to attend those games. UMass Lowell's Hockey East quarterfinal series against Boston University will also be played behind closed doors.