As more games are canceled, conference officials are discussing what to do with their expiration guidelines. I’ve reached out to several league officials and while no one is ready to reverse their plans, everyone is at least discussing it. “The Pac-12 and its track and field directors are actively discussing confiscation / cancellation policies,” said media relations director Jesse Hooker in a reply to an email echoing the opinion of many within the sport. The ACC sporting directors are expected to discuss their guidelines at their weekly meeting this week, and the SEC also intends to make this a topic of conversation before the league game begins after the holidays.
This is especially critical now as conferences are geared towards hosting league games. Not playing in the non-conference could affect the strength of a team’s schedule for an overall bid, but not playing a league game means being docked in the overall standings. ACC, Big East, Big Ten, Horizon League, MAAC, Missouri Valley and Pac-12 have all started league play. Seton Hall and DePaul each lost Big East games, as did Washington in Pac-12. The Duke at Miami’s queens game was canceled at the ACC, resulting in a loss for the Hurricanes.
Trainers are already expressing their opinion and calling for a change. “I don’t like giving up either,” said Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski recently.
The guidelines were introduced earlier this academic year and before the most recent outbreak which involved a number of vaccinated players.
The NCAA does not control how the regular season goes. Cancellation policy is at the discretion of each individual conference. But Dan Gavitt, the executive vice president of basketball, told me last week that while the Committee on Infractions cannot recognize a game that is not played, it can subjectively consider a team’s attempt to set a more stringent schedule. Iona, for example, intended to play against a Seton Hall ranked team, but last weekend’s scheduled game was canceled due to the pirates’ problems with the virus.