Ivy League Cancels Conference Basketball Tournaments Amid Coronavirus Concerns

With growing concern over the coronavirus outbreak, the Ivy League announced on Tuesday that it would be canceling the men's and women's basketball tournaments. The annual postseason event was halted after the league received advice from medical health professionals.

A newly-formed advisory board has been working with the NCAA to make decisions about upcoming events. The panel had not advised canceling any upcoming events, and the plan is to continue with the NCAA Tournament. However, the Ivy League is taking extra precautionary measures.

Yale won the men's regular-season championship and will automatically move on to the NCAA Tournament. Princeton will now have a berth in the women's NCAA Tournament after winning the regular-season championship.

"We understand and share the disappointment with student-athletes, coaches and fans who will not be able to participate in these tournaments," Ivy League executive director Robin Harris said, per CBS Sports. "Regrettably, the information and recommendations presented to us from public health authorities and medical professionals have convinced us that this is the most prudent decision."

The league said that one reason for the decision was to discourage and limit large gatherings on campus. As Harris continued to explain in the release, "following a number of league-wide discussions throughout the last several weeks, we have decided to exercise caution in the interest of student-athletes, fans, and the general community."

The league will also be implementing "highly-restrictive, in-venue spectator limitations" for all upcoming events on campus. Out of season practices and competitions will also be canceled due to safety concerns.

The Ivy League also announced that it will be refunding in full all purchases for tickets to the now-canceled tournament.

Policies are subject to change in the coming days and months, but those decisions will be based on the "ongoing review of circumstances." For now, the Ivy League will be focusing on avoiding any potential outbreaks on the campuses.

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According to David Gardner of Bleacher Report, Turner and CBS revealed on an NCAA Tournament conference call that there are currently no plans to hold the games without spectators. This could change in the coming days, but the expectation is that fans will be allowed entrance into the arenas as the league tournaments take place.

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