SEC cancels remainder of basketball tournament

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Southeastern Conference Commissioner Greg Sankey announces Wednesday, March 11, 2020, that fans will not be allowed in the arena to watch NCAA college basketball games in the SEC tournament in Nashville, Tenn., starting Thursday. The Southeastern Conference joined the rest of the Power Five leagues and announced that only family and essential personnel would attend its men's and women's tournament basketball games. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Florida’s 2020 SEC Basketball Tournament ended before it started.

The league canceled the tournament Thursday about an hour after a conference call among the commissioners of the major conferences. The decision was based on the latest developments and the continued spread of the coronavirus.

The Florida team, which came to Nashville on Wednesday, was eating its pregame meal at the team hotel when Florida coach Mike White announced to the team the tournament was canceled.

The league on Wednesday announced that the games at Bridgestone Arena would be played in front of family members, essential personnel and media.

But there was still another news cycle to deal with and as more stories came out, the league pulled the plug. 

The Gators were scheduled to play Georgia at about 3:30 p.m. today.

From the SEC release:

“We understand that this decision will be disappointing to our student-athletes and coaches who have been preparing all season to compete in this event as well as viewers at home,” said SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey. “While this was not an easy decision, the health and well-being of our entire SEC community is of paramount importance.”

The SEC’s regular season champion, the University of Kentucky, will be awarded the conference’s automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.

The SEC will provide additional updates on other scheduled SEC championship events as they become available. The SEC reminds everyone to be attentive to everyday preventive actions identified by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (www.cdc.gov).

1 COMMENT

  1. So the Swine Flu killed ONE THOUSAND PEOPLE under Pres. Obama in America, and you all in the SEC and ”brass with no as*es” did NOTHING with regards to sports participants and fans. Now 21 people infected in Florida, under 50 dead in America, UNDER 5,000 in the whole DAMN WORLD for the ”CHINESE CORONA VIRUS.” You all may as well CANCEL THE WHOLE DAMN SEC FOOTBALL SEASON, TOO! It’s chicken crap of all you officials, and way too much FEAR MONGERING! So go ahead and check-in the whole damn SEC and its athletes into HOSPITALS, where it’s safer… NOT!