Marching on: No teams had to withdraw from NCAA Tournament
So far, so good from Indianapolis.
That’s the report from NCAA senior vice president of basketball Dan Gavitt, who spoke with the media on Wednesday morning. He told reporters that no team has been forced to withdraw from the tournament because of COVID-19 and there will be no replacement teams entering into the field.
Before the start of March Madness, the NCAA implemented a 48-hour policy stating that if a team could not participate in the tournament because of a COVID-19 disruption, a replacement squad would be asked to join the field. That needed to happen within 48 hours of the first round of games, and it did not happen.
Gavitt: “The deadline for replacement teams has passed. … None of the 68 teams have had to withdraw.”
— Pat Forde (@ByPatForde) March 17, 2021
The NCAA reports today that there have been 6,900 COVID-19 tests taken so far this week with seven confirmed positives. "The 1/10th of 1% positivity rate is encouraging," per VP of basketball Dan Gavitt.
— Dan Wolken (@DanWolken) March 17, 2021
No changes will be made to the bracket. At this point, if a team is forced to withdraw, the game will be ruled a no-contest and the opponent will advance to the next round.
This year, the NCAA made the decision to establish a bubble-like situation for the tournament. Host sites are being held throughout the state of Indiana, mostly in Indianapolis. Locations for games this March include Assembly Hall, Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Farmers Coliseum, Hinkle Fieldhouse, Lucas Oil Stadium and Mackey Arena.
Games are scheduled to begin on Thursday, March 18 with the First Four.