Last Updated 3:34 PM, September 19, 2020

College basketball: Schedule, latest COVID-19 news for the 2020-21 season

NCAA's Dan Gavitt: College basketball season to start Nov. 25
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NCAA's Gavitt, Holzman talk NCAA tournament plans, season start date

NCAA Senior Vice President of Basketball Dan Gavitt and NCAA Vice President of Women's Basketball Lynn Holzman talked with Andy Katz on Friday, Sept. 18 about upcoming men's and women's seasons now starting on Nov. 25.

Here are some highlights from their conversations:

  • Both Gavitt and Holzman said the plan remains to hold NCAA tournaments with the same field size (68 for men, 64 for women). They also said the plans include the Final Four sites of Indianapolis for the men and San Antonio for the women. 
  • "As of today, we are planning and continue to plan to have our championship with the full field," Holzman said.
  • Gavitt said the decision to move the start of the season to Nov. 25 came about from two big reasons: testing and the fact that about 75 percent of DI institutions will either be done with the fall semester or will have moved to online instruction and exams by that date. He also emphasized the importance of getting student-athletes physically and mentally ready for the season.
  • Gavitt said the four-game minimum for nonconference games is a recommendation and not a requirement. He added that if teams play nonconference games, that will add "cross-pollination" to help the committee when it comes to making NCAA tournament selections and comparing teams, even if they're in different conferences. Even with teams playing fewer and possibly unequal numbers of nonconference games, the committee will find ways to look at teams. It's about adjustment — the best at-large teams will be selected from a variety of factors and the teams will be seeded accordingly.

You can watch the entire interviews here:



7:20 pm, September 19, 2020

Battle 4 Atlantis cancels 2020 event due to COVID-19

The 2020 Battle 4 Atlantis has been canceled. The Battle 4 Atlantis will resume in 2021.

On Friday, the 2020 Battle 4 Atlantis was canceled due to COVID-19. The event has been held annually since 2011 and is scheduled to return to The Bahamas for tournament's tenth anniversary in 2021.

4:44 pm, September 18, 2020

2020 Maui Invitational to be played in North Carolina

The Maui Jim Maui Invitational has announced that the 2020 tournament will be played in Asheville, N.C. This is the first time the event will take place in the contiguous United States during its 37-year history.

Tournament dates and matchups have not yet been announced. These are the teams expected to participate:

  • Alabama
  • Davidson
  • Indiana
  • North Carolina
  • Providence
  • Stanford
  • Texas
  • UNLV
4:27 pm, September 17, 2020

MAAC reveals 2020-21 college basketball scheduling model

On Wednesday, the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference revealed its schedule model for the 2020-21 men's and women's college basketball season. This announcement comes a day after the DI Council approved a Nov. 25 start date for the season. Here's what you need to know:

  • The MAAC is planning to play a 22-game league schedule this season.
    • Conference play is slated to open Tuesday, Dec. 8 for the men and Wednesday, Dec. 9 for the women.
      • Men's basketball will play league games on Tuesdays and Fridays.
      • Women's basketball will play league games on Wednesdays and Saturdays.
        • The last week in February has been left open as a COVID-19 make up.
  • The first two weeks of the season are both for non-conference matchups.
    • There is also a third non-conference availability on Dec. 22-23.
  • The MAAC Championships are slated to be held from March 9-13. 
10:40 pm, September 16, 2020

DI Council: Men’s and women’s basketball seasons to start Nov. 25

On Tuesday, Sept. 16, the Division I Council approved moving the start date of the college basketball season to Wednesday, Nov 25. The new start date was approved following recommendations from the NCAA Division I Men’s and Women’s Basketball Oversight Committees.

According to the committees, this move was designed to begin competition "when at least three-quarters of Division I institutions will have either concluded their fall terms or moved remaining instruction and exams online creating a more controlled and less populated campus environment that may reduce the risk of COVID-19 ..."

Here are some of the schedule changes made for the 2020-21 season:

  • Programs can begin preseason practice on Wednesday, Oct. 14.
    • This is a 42-day window to conduct 30 practices at most.
  • Exhibitions and scrimmages before Nov. 25 will not be allowed.
  • There are three scheduling options in DI men's basketball.
    • 24 regular-season games and up to three games in one multi-team event.
    • 25 regular-season games and up to two games in one multi-team event.
    • 25 regular-season games without playing in a multi-team event. 
  • There are two scheduling options in DI women's basketball.
    • 23 regular-season games and up to four additional games in one multi-team event.
    • 25 regular-season games without participating in a multi-team event.
  • Teams must play a minimum of 13 games against DI opponents to be considered for NCAA championship selection.
  • A transition period will take place from Sept. 21 to Oct. 13 between out-of-season activity and preseason practice.
    • Teams may partake in conditioning, sport-related meetings and skill instruction for up to 12 hours a week.
      • Skill instruction may not exceed eight hours a week. Athletes must receive two days per week during this period.

“The new season start date near the Thanksgiving holiday provides the optimal opportunity to successfully launch the basketball season,” NCAA Senior Vice President of Basketball Dan Gavitt said in the release. “It is a grand compromise of sorts and a unified approach that focuses on the health and safety of student-athletes competing towards the 2021 Division I basketball championships.”

10:06 pm, September 16, 2020

Katz: Division I men's college basketball season to start Nov. 25

On Wednesday, Sept. 16, correspondent Andy Katz reported that the Division I men's college basketball season will begin Wednesday, Nov. 25. Here's what we know from Katz:

  • Practice can begin on Wednesday, Oct. 14.
  • Teams will not be able to play more than 27 regular season games.
    • That is a four-game decrease from 2019.
    • Programs must also play a minimum of 13 regular season games.
  • There will not be any exhibitions or scrimmages played.
  • The Division I Council recommended a minimum of four non-conference games.

We expect to know more details on this as well as information on the start of the DI women's basketball season later today.

4:45 pm, September 16, 2020

We're waiting for a big basketball update today

The NCAA Division I Council will meet today, Sept. 16, and the Council is expected to announce a start date for the basketball season, among other announcements. The 2020-21 season was originally scheduled to start Nov. 10, 2020, however, the start date could be pushed to later in November or December.

The DI Council meeting started at 1 p.m. ET. You can see a list of all NCAA meetings here.

NCAA Senior Vice President of Basketball Dan Gavitt has previously said the NCAA is currently not considering plans to expand the NCAA tournament field.

"We're not worried about the tournament, it's going to happen," March Madness correspondent Andy Katz has said. "You can book it."

Gonzaga coach Mark Few told Katz that he would like to see the season start sometime around Thanksgiving.

"I would just love to see it start in that window that all of us will have across college basketball, from either right around Thanksgiving or a little before or a little after," Few said.

8:56 pm, September 12, 2020

Purdue's Painter, Texas' Smart and Dayton's Grant discuss potential season start date's Andy Katz held a roundtable video discussion with Purdue men's basketball coach Matt Painter, Texas coach Shaka Smart and Dayton coach Anthony Grant ahead of the Division I Council meeting on Sept. 16.

When asked when he'd like to see the season start, Painter — who is part of the NCAA Men’s Basketball Oversight Committee — mentioned the end of November, citing it as "a comfort zone when most schools are getting out."

Grant wants to fully understand the ramifications of a late November start and how it could affect his team's schedule and NCAA tournament evaluation at the end of the season. 

"Give me the rules of the race before I tell you what race I want to run," Grant said.

1:15 pm, September 10, 2020

NCAA's Dan Gavitt says the tournament is not expanding

NCAA Senior Vice President of Basketball Dan Gavitt said on Thursday the NCAA is not considering a plan to expand the tournament field. You can read the full statement below: 

Gavitt's statement came after ACC men's basketball coaches shared a proposal that the NCAA allow all Division I schools to participate in the 2021 NCAA basketball tournament. There are 357 Division I programs in the country and 346 of those are eligible to play in next year’s tournament.

Gavitt said in August that he and NCAA Division I Men’s and Women’s Basketball Oversight Committees, will provide an update and recommendations on a start date for the 2020-21 college basketball season in mid-September.  The DI Council is scheduled to meet on Wednesday, Sept. 16. 

3:38 pm, September 9, 2020

Kentucky's Calipari, Michigan State's Izzo, Gonzaga's Few talk the start of the season

March Madness correspondent Andy Katz held a roundtable video conference with Kentucky men's basketball coach John Calipari, Michigan State coach Tom Izzo and Gonzaga coach Mark Few. "We're not worried about the tournament, it's going to happen," Katz said at the start. "You can book it."

When asked when he would like to see the college basketball season start, Few highlighted the week of Thanksgiving.

"I would just love to see it start in that window that all of us will have across college basketball, from either right around Thanksgiving or a little before or a little after," Few said.

"Outside of the the NBA and NASA, it's probably about as safe as you could hope for," Few said, regarding having his team on an otherwise empty campus.



11:00 pm, September 2, 2020

NCAA President Emmert: Highest priority is winter and spring sports

NCAA President Mark Emmert said winter and spring sports are the NCAA's highest priority after both missed out on championships in 2020 due to the coronavirus. This statement came during an announcement in which Emmert said the NCAA would not hold DI fall championships this year.

Emmert's full conversation with Andy Katz, which was published Aug. 13, is available below:

9:24 pm, September 2, 2020

NCAA 'confident' we'll have a women's basketball season, championship

NCAA Vice President of Women’s Basketball Lynn Holzman told's Andy Katz on Sept. 2 she's “confident that we will have a season, and certainly will have a championship."

Holzman's statement comes after Dan Gavitt announced that an update on a start date for college basketball could come in mid-September. You can watch Holzman's full interview with Katz and Division I Women’s Basketball Committee chair Nina King above.

10:15 pm, September 2, 2020

We expect to know soon when the season will start

We're getting closer to the mid-September time the NCAA's Dan Gavitt told us we'd know more about when the men's and women's college basketball season will begin — and what it will look like when it does. 

Gavitt, the NCAA Senior VP of Basketball, said last month that he and NCAA Division I Men’s and Women’s Basketball Oversight Committees, will provide an update and recommendations on a start date for the 2020-21 college basketball season in mid-September. On Wednesday, Sept. 16, the DI Council is scheduled to meet.

"By mid-September, we will provide direction about whether the season and practice start on time or a short-term delay is necessitated by the ongoing pandemic," Gavitt said in an August statement. "We recognize that we are living and operating in an uncertain time, and it is likely that mid-September will be just the first milestone for many important decisions pertaining to the regular season and the NCAA basketball championships."

The men's college basketball season was originally scheduled to begin Nov. 10. 

9:56 pm, September 2, 2020

Pac-12 Conference postpones basketball through the end of 2020

On August 11, the Pac-12 Conference announced that it postponed all sports competition through the end of the calendar year. This decision will sideline the conference's men's and women's basketball programs until at least Jan. 1. According to the release, the league state that when COVID-19 conditions improve, it will consider a return to competition for affected sports after Jan. 1, 2021.

“Ultimately, our decision was guided by science and a deep commitment to the health and welfare of student-athletes. We certainly hope that the Pac-12 will be able to return to competition in the New Year," Oregon president Michael H. Schill said in the release.

9:46 pm, September 2, 2020

Ivy League postponement means no basketball this fall

On July 8, the Ivy League became the first athletic conference to announce it would not hold athletic competition during the fall semester. Under this ruling, Ivy League men's and women's basketball would not be able to begin play until the conclusion of the academic term.

“As a leadership group, we have a responsibility to make decisions that are in the best interest of the students who attend our institutions, as well as the faculty and staff who work at our schools. These decisions are extremely difficult, particularly when they impact meaningful student-athlete experiences that so many value and cherish," according to a joint statement from the Ivy League Council of Presidents.

2:41 pm, September 3, 2020

The men's March Madness schedule, as of right now

Here is the 2021 men's March Madness schedule, as it stands right now. The NCAA's Dan Gavitt said last month the NCAA is considering many options on how to hold the tournament safely. So these dates can change, but there's where we stand right now:

  • Selection Sunday: March 14
  • First Four: March 16-17
  • First Round: March 18-19
  • Second Round: March 20-21
  • Sweet 16: March 25-26
  • Elite Eight: March 27-28
  • Final Four (national semifinals): April 3, in Indianapolis
  • National Championship: April 5, in Indianapolis
7:02 pm, September 4, 2020

The tentative NCAA women's basketball tournament schedule

Here's a glance at the 2021 NCAA women's basketball tournament schedule. NCAA VP Lynn Holzman said she is confident there will be a tournament and a championship, but the committee is still looking at different options to ensure the safety of all student-athletes. 

  • Selection Show: March 15 
  • First Round: March 19-20
  • Second Round: March 21-22
  • Albany Regional: TBD
  • Austin Regional: TBD
  • Cincinnati Regional: TBD
  • Spokane Regional: TBD
  • Women's Final Four: April 2, in San Antonio 
  • National Championship: April 4, in San Antonio