As the VCU Rams were set to face the Oregon Ducks tonight in the first round of the NCAA Men’s Tournament, the game, which was scheduled to air on TNT, was declared without a competition due to “COVID protocols.” 19 ”. All of the Rams’ dreams of March Madness ended abruptly there.
“This decision was made in consultation with the Marion County Public Health Department. As a result, Oregon will advance to the next round of the tournament, ”the NCAA said in a statement. “The NCAA and the committee regret that VCU student-athletes and coaching staff cannot participate in a tournament in which they have earned the right to participate. Due to privacy concerns, we cannot provide further details.
While the organization did not provide specific details regarding the breach of safety protocols, VCU coach Mike Rhoades noted that several positive Covid tests had returned to the team in the past 48 hours. NCAA tournament rules require that each team have at least five eligible players on the field, in order for a game to take place.
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“We are devastated for our players and our coaches. It was a dream for all of us to play in the NCAA tournament, ”Rhoades said in a statement. “We appreciate the care provided by our doctors and administration this year, and all of our effort and attention will go to our players at this time.”
As the Rams were left behind after tonight’s announcement, the tournament is moving forward. The Ducks’ next game is Monday against the Iowa Hawkeyes.
At the time of writing, Missouri is currently facing Oklahoma, as Norfolk State takes on Gonzaga. Later tonight, UCLA plays its first-round game with BYU, as the Texas Longhorns face the Abilene Christian Wildcats. The final game kicks off at 9:50 p.m. ET. Originally slated to air on TruTV, it will now air simultaneously on TNT (in place of the scrapped VCU-Oregon) and TruTV.
– March Madness TV (@MarchMadnessTV) 20 mars 2021