Men's Basketball

Former Alabama associate athletics director violated NCAA ethical conduct rules

A former University of Alabama associate athletics director violated NCAA ethical conduct rules when he received money in exchange for facilitating a meeting between the father of a student-athlete, a financial advisor and the financial advisor’s representative.

Classroom comeback

Shaquita Smith and Terrance Motley are among the first handful of former men’s and women’s basketball players to graduate through the NCAA Former Student-Athlete Degree Achievement Program.

NCAA Relocating 2021 Division I Men’s Basketball Championship Sites

The NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Committee announced today the relocation of 13 predetermined preliminary round sites for the 2021 Division I Men’s Basketball Championship.

Blanket waiver approved for men’s basketball MTEs

The Division I Men’s Basketball Oversight Committee on Friday recommended, and NCAA staff approved, a blanket waiver for multiple-team events as event operators and NCAA member schools work through the ongoing implications of the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on scheduling for the 2020-21 season.

Guidance and Recommendations for Game Day Operations - Basketball

The focus of this document is to outline guidance and recommendations for institutions as they host basketball competition in their facility. All information contained in this document should be considered recommendations and/or considerations. As with prior NCAA publications, this document reflects the relevant scientific and medical information available at the time of print. These materials should not be used as a substitute for medical or legal advice. Rather, they are intended as a resource for member schools to use in coordination with applicable government and related institutional policies and guidelines, and they remain subject to further revision as available data and information in this space continue to emerge and evolve.

This document covers the period from when student-athletes and other team personnel arrive at the competition site through the competition. This document does not address travel, testing and officiating. For specific recommendations on COVID-19 testing and other health and safety guidance, please refer to the Core Principles of Resocialization of Collegiate Basketball document.

Communication.

  1. Recommend institutions provide visiting teams and officials with information pertaining to their facility at least 72 hours prior to the scheduled game. This document should include:
    1. Which entrance to use to enter/exit the facility.
    2. Any screening requirements needed prior to entry.
    3. Availability of locker room and/or meeting space.
    4. Protocol for use of the athletic training facility, if needed.
    5. Any restrictions on fan attendance.

Personnel.

  1. All individuals necessary to host a home basketball game should be divided into three tiers, as described below. Tiers are based on the ability to wear masks/face coverings, the ability to practice physical distancing (6 feet or greater) and the role played in connection with the competition.  All individuals should wear masks/face coverings and physically distance whenever possible.  Only individuals assigned to Tiers 1 and 2 will be permitted access to the inner bubble (e.g., locker rooms, athletic training room, court area). The inner bubble must always be secured.
    1. Tier 1 — This tier consists of individuals for whom physical distancing and face coverings are not possible or effective during athletic training or competition. Examples of relevant individuals include student-athletes, coaches, athletic trainers and physical therapists, medical staff, equipment staff and officials. Tier 1 individuals should be limited (e.g., 25-30). All Tier 1 individuals should wear masks/face coverings, except for student-athletes and officials on the playing surface. Physical distancing should be adhered to whenever possible.
    2. Tier 2 — This tier consists of individuals who come into close contact with Tier 1 individuals but can reasonably maintain physical distance and use face coverings during their interaction. Examples of relevant individuals include certain team staff (e.g., athletic department staff) and certain operational staff (e.g., security, event staff and league staff). Tier 2 individuals will maintain physical distance and universal masking while performing their jobs, and any interaction with Tier 1 individuals must be approved by the designated event organizer or athletics health care administrator (or designee), and both parties must maintain physical distance and wear face coverings.
    3. Tier 3 — This tier includes individuals who provide event services but are not in the same vicinity with Tier 1 individuals (and should closer contact become necessary, would be reclassified into Tier 2). Tier 3 individuals should minimize contact with Tier 2 individuals and observe masking and physical distancing at all times. Examples of relevant individuals include certain operational staff (e.g., housekeeping, catering, sanitation and transportation) and media/broadcast.
    4. Spectators are not part of Tiers 1, 2 or 3, and, if present, should observe local health official mandates and guidance with seating clearly separated from these tiered individuals at all times, and as per below.
  2. Each host institution’s athletics health care administrator should maintain contact with local and state health officials regarding operations within the competition venue, including oversight of the daily screening log and any health developments of attendees.
  3. Recommend that visiting band and/or cheer groups avoid travel. If the home band and/or cheer groups are permitted, they should be managed as other Tier 2 personnel.

Physical distancing/PPE/masks-face coverings.

  1. Recommend all individuals, regardless of role or function, always wear a mask/face covering prior to entry and within the competition venue. The type of mask/face covering and the proper way to wear it should be consistent with CDC recommendations.
  2. Cough/sneeze etiquette and hand sanitization are recommended at all times.
  3. Face shields may be worn but do not replace masks/face coverings, meaning that a face shield alone is not recommended as sufficient infection control mitigation.
  4. No one outside of Tier 1 and Tier 2 individuals shall be allowed in the team areas (e.g., athletic training room, locker rooms, locker room hallway) when student-athletes are present.
  5. When feasible, Tier 1 and Tier 2 individuals will not enter guest and public areas of the competition venue (e.g., stands, concession stands, concourse, ticket office).
  6. Tier 2 individuals may interact directly with those in Tier 1 only as necessary and upon approval. All parties must wear masks/face coverings and maintain 6 feet of physical distance.
  7. Universal masking and physical distancing are the rule except in the competition or medical care areas.
  8. Medical staff should follow strict hand sanitization, especially during sessions with student-athletes. Whenever feasible, athletic training staff and student-athletes they are treating should maintain masking/face coverings and physical distancing.
  9. Recommend the pregame meeting between game officials and table crew be conducted virtually or in a place that allows for 6 feet of physical distance among participants. Officials should always wear masks/face coverings and maintain physical distancing during all activities except active competitive play.
  10. Recommend eliminating or modifying the captains meeting from its current format.

Cleaning and disinfecting.

  1. Competition venue cleaning staff shall ensure all team and game officials areas are cleaned prior to each practice and competition. This includes, but is not limited to, team and officials locker rooms, coaches’ rooms, restrooms, team bench areas, the playing court, goal unit padding, nets and the scorers’ table surfaces.
  2. Time between practices and games should be adjusted to allow orderly ingress and egress and necessary cleaning protocols to be fully executed. Teams may be restricted to specific entry and exit times to allow cleaning.
  3. Regular cleaning by competition venue staff of all high-touch areas, including, but not limited to, restrooms, handles, call buttons, chairs and workstations.
  4. Athletic training areas, including treatment tables, stools, high-contact areas and equipment, shall be disinfected after each use.
  5. Remind teams and officials to follow personal health guidelines (e.g., wash hands frequently; do not touch your eyes, nose, or mouth; use hand sanitizer; maintain physical distance and wears masks whenever possible).
  6. Minimize physical interactions, such as high-fives, fist bumps and hugs, with members of other teams.
  7. Provide hand sanitizer stations and disinfectant spray bottles and/or disinfecting wipes in each team locker room, bench and scorer’s table.
  8. Recommend the elimination of ball persons who are not Tier 1 individuals. Designate a member of the host institution to clean game court and game balls as outlined.

Hydration and towels.

  1. Hydration:
    1. Team members should drink only out of their own cup/personal water bottle.
    2. Single-use cups with proper disposal are preferred.
    3. Water bottles should be labeled for individual use.
    4. Contactless water dispensers may be used.
    5. Each team should have its own set of hydration coolers (two — one for water, one for sports drink), water bottles and bottle carriers. Cooler carts may remain behind the benches, but coolers shall be replaced once competition concludes.
  2. Towels:
    1. An allotment of clean towels should be placed in the locker room prior to the arrival of the visiting team.
    2. Towels should be used by only one individual for one practice or one half of competition, then laundered.
    3. Multiple towel bins will be needed to discard used towels (locker rooms, athletic training room, bench area, game officials).
    4. An alternative is the use of disposable towels and appropriate disposal container.

Team bench layout.

  1. Team benches. If spacing allows, recommend using multiple rows of seats (with appropriate distance between each seat). Seats should be assigned to specific players and coaches. If an L-shaped configuration is used (which wraps around the baseline), benches must be 6 feet from the end line and must end prior to the 3-foot run-off lane, per NCAA rule 1-3.3 (Men’s Playing Rules and Women’s Playing Rules).
  2. Individual water bottle and towel. Each player and coach will have their own water bottle and towel by their seat. Players and coaches will be responsible for getting their own water and towels, including during timeouts.
  3. Masks/face coverings on the bench. Require that all bench personnel who are not on the court should always wear masks/face coverings. If a face shield is used, it should be done in conjunction with a face mask.
  4. Timeouts. Recommend movable chairs be used during timeouts and period breaks. At the conclusion of each timeout or period break, the timeout chairs will be removed to a location to be cleaned by team staff.

Scorers’ table layout.

  1. Entry tunnels/doors to the seating area:
    1. No attendees seated or gathered next to entry/exit tunnels/doors; maintain at least 6 feet from seating area around tunnels/doors.
    2. Tier 1 and 2 members should have a different entry tunnel/door to the court than Tier 3 members, if possible. Tier 1 and Tier 2 individuals will not use the tunnel/door at the same time.
  2. Plexiglass barriers on the scorers’ table are not necessary and could create a safety issue if the table is not sufficiently removed from the court area. Universal masking and distancing address infection control mitigation. Consideration needs to be given to officials who need access to replay monitors.
  3. Even if a face shield is worn, masks must also be worn.  
  4. Recommend adjusting the courtside setup to allow for physical distancing from playing court and benches. If spacing allows, recommend using multiple rows of seats with appropriate distance between each seat. Only Tier 2 staff at scorers’ table.
    1. Row 1: recommend 4-6 essential Tier 2 staff (e.g., official scorer, shot clock operator, video replay).
    2. Row 2: other essential Tier 2 staff.
    3. On the team bench sideline, Row 1 shall be set back from the playing court sideline a minimum of 6 feet to allow distancing from the court.
    4. Row 2 should be a minimum of 6 feet behind Row 1.
    5. Baseline and/or opposite side of the court may be used for other necessary staff.
    6. A minimum 12-foot physical distance barrier must separate the scorers’ table and bench areas from the general seating area. 
    7. Similar spacing is recommended for “broadcast tables” on the other side of the court.

Facility planning — movement in/around areas.

  1. Entry/exit.
    1. All entrants shall be subject to local health official restrictions and guidance, including health screening and temperature checks, before entering the competition venue.
    2. Entrants should be advised not to enter the venue if they are experiencing any signs or symptoms of COVID-19, feeling unwell or have been in contact with someone who has tested positive.
    3. Head count controls must be in place at each entry point if local guidelines restrict competition venue capacity as needed.
    4. Entry and exit procedures for the competition venue, back-of-house areas and courtside areas will be clearly marked.
    5. No loitering in back-of-house hallways or common spaces.
    6. Entry tunnels/doors to and from the court must be kept clear; no standing in tunnels/doorways.
  2. Fan seating.
    1. Subject to local health official restrictions and guidance.
    2. Recommend that courtside seating be eliminated.  If no Tier 1, 2 or 3 individuals occupy the space opposite the bench and/or scorers’ table area, recommend the first row of fan seating be a minimum of 12 feet from the sideline.  
    3. Recommend the first row of fan seating be a minimum of 12 feet from the back of the bench and/or scorers’ table area, the corners and ends of the court.
  3. Isolation and quarantine rooms.
    1. Diagnostic testing should be readily available for symptomatic or suspected cases of COVID-19.
    2. Recommend that isolation and quarantine rooms be identified and ready for use. Isolation rooms are for newly positive cases or evaluation of individuals with COVID-19 symptoms. Quarantine rooms are for high-risk exposure individuals of newly infected or symptomatic individuals. Local health official reporting protocols should be followed.
  4. HVAC considerations.
    1. Recommend review of HVAC-related engineering controls. Encourage three or more air changes per hour and use of more fresh recharge air vs. recirculation.
    2. Discuss temperature settings targeting a 74+F temperature and 50+% relative humidity.

Locker room.

  1. Recommend all individuals, regardless of role or function, always wear a mask/face covering within the competition venue.
  2. Once Tier 1 individuals reach the team bench, masks/face coverings may be removed for those individuals on the playing court.
  3. Student-athletes and team bench personnel are recommended to wear masks/face coverings within their assigned team locker room.
  4. If spacing allows, recommend 6 foot spacing between seats within the home and away team locker rooms.
  5. Warmup:
    1. Masks/face coverings must be worn while transitioning to and from the locker room and court.
    2. On-court players must replace their masks/face coverings before leaving the court to return to their designated locker room.
  6. Pregame and transitions between games (doubleheaders/MTE):
    1. Teams may stretch and warm up pregame within a designated area or their locker room.
    2. Teams must return fully to their team locker room with two minutes left in the preceding game.
    3. Teams must wait for permission to enter the floor once cleared by the previous teams and appropriate sanitation procedures have been executed.
  7. Showers:
    1. Team members are encouraged to shower at their hotel after the game, as opposed to at the venue (if applicable).
    2. Teams are encouraged to depart the facility immediately after their game. If student-athletes stay in the facility to watch the next game, they should preferably shower at their hotel. If this is not feasible, showering should be limited to prevent non-physically distant interactions.

Handling equipment.

  1. Each team should have its own rack (6-12 or an equal amount) of basketballs for use while in the venue. The basketballs should be cleaned by a designated member of the host institution’s game operations staff (Tier 2) according to manufacturer’s recommendations with dish soap and water, and not with a disinfectant.
  2. Recommend three or four basketballs be set aside for game use only. Recommend replacing the game ball each time a ball goes out of bounds and is touched by an individual not in Tier 1 or 2. Game balls should be cleaned during media timeouts, halftime and each period break with dish soap and water.
  3. Officials’ water/towels should be located behind each basket or on a table across from the scorers’ table. These must be specific to each official and handled only by the officials.

On-court operations.

  1. Eliminate any coach/official/scorers’ table physical contact (e.g., handshakes, fist bumps) at all times.
  2. Recommend eliminating the postgame handshake line involving the two participating teams. Consider some act of sportsmanship, such as the teams lining up at their respective free throw lines and giving congratulatory waves to each other.
  3. Consider eliminating or reducing the time allotted for any halftime and/or timeout promotions to allow the court to be cleaned.
  4. Recommend assigned work areas for the media to minimize the need for cleaning workstations until after media representatives have exited the venue.

Rules, policies and protocols.

  1. Recommend eliminating hard copy stats to the bench.
    Options for stats on the bench:
  • Conferences are encouraged to apply for the technology waiver by Dec. 1, 2020, which allows the transmission of live stats to the bench area (men’s playing rules website and women’s playing rules website).
  • Institutions may place sanitized printers in close proximity to each bench area, allowing coaches to retrieve updated hard copies of stats.
  1. Establish guidelines for host medical staff. Team athletic medical personnel need to follow their established institutional guidelines.
  2. For doubleheaders, add additional time between games to allow for cleaning (at least one hour).
  3. In-venue catering should be limited to packaged, grab-and-go-type options. No catered buffets.
  4. Crowd noise piped into the facility (even during live play) would need to comply with decibel levels to be clarified by the NCAA Men’s and Women’s Playing Rules Committees, along with proper monitoring and enforcement procedures.

Massachusetts provided impermissible financial aid in two sports

The University of Massachusetts, Amherst, impermissibly provided 12 student-athletes in men’s basketball and women’s tennis with financial aid that exceeded full cost of attendance.

DI Council supports expansion of basketball committees

The Division I Council supported two proposals Wednesday that would expand the Division I Men’s and Women’s Basketball Committees to 12 members. Currently, the composition of both committees is 10 members. The concepts of both proposals...

FAQ: Principles of Resocialization of Collegiate Basketball and Testing Considerations for All Sports

These frequently asked questions have been developed in support of the release of the Core Principles of Resocialization of Collegiate Basketball (Basketball Guidelines), the fourth in a series of resocialization documents intended to provide guidance to the NCAA membership about issues arising from the COVID-19 global pandemic. The Basketball Guidelines update and extend, and in some cases replace, the guidance provided in the previous three documents (Core Principles, Action Plan, and Developing Standards).  

As with prior NCAA publications, the materials are meant to be consistent with guidance published by the federal government and its health agencies. This document reflects the relevant scientific and medical information available at the time of publication. These materials are not and should not be used as a substitute for medical or legal advice. Rather, they are intended as a resource for member schools to use in coordination with applicable government and related institutional policies and guidelines and remain subject to revision as available data and information emerge and evolve.

Questions can be directed to SSI@ncaa.org.

Why are the Basketball Guidelines considered recommendations and not requirements?

When the Board of Governors elected to mandate the considerations described in the Developing Standards document, there was considerable uncertainty in this country regarding both unprecedented infection rates and accessibility to testing. Further, there were concerns related to student-athletes who did not wish to compete because of COVID-related health issues. In this setting, the Board believed that a mandate would expedite and facilitate membership’s identification and establishment of a reasonable and consistent baseline standard related to in-season safety and student-athlete protection regarding scholarships and eligibility. We now have a better projection regarding testing availability and options and have obtained more information regarding sport and societal resocialization. In this fluid environment, the Board agreed that the Basketball Guidelines should serve as a guidance resource, especially as we continue to assess emerging science and infrastructure.

Are there specific recommendations for student-athletes who may leave and return to campus for holiday break?

Schools should consider how best to encourage all student-athletes to continue strict health/infection control precautions while on break. Because of the combination of travel and possible social interactions, it is important that student-athletes always observe infection mitigation behavior. When they return, it is anticipated that they will self-quarantine, re-enter normal school testing protocols, and have at least one negative test prior to re-entering athletics and participate in transition period activities, as applicable. A prescribed quarantine period for student-athletes returning to campus is not specified as part of the Basketball Guidelines.

What if a school cannot obtain testing three times per week for indoor high transmission risk sports, or for outdoor high transmission risk sports and intermediate transmission risk sports where antigen testing is considered?

The suggestions described in the Basketball Guidelines are not intended to vary based on an institution’s ability to access or obtain testing. Rather, each school is encouraged to work closely with applicable institutional medical/legal/risk management personnel to evaluate all available health and safety information and guidance and to make an informed decision about whether and to what extent identified risks can be appropriately addressed through any other alternative, in each case with an eye toward unique institutional considerations and applicable state and local health agency requirements.

Will there be different guidelines for schools that can limit competitions to a single state or region?

No. The Basketball Guidelines are intended to apply to all schools, regardless of where competitions will occur and whether competing teams are from nearby locations.

Do the testing protocols described in the Basketball Guidelines change if teams are scheduled for back-to-back games over the weekend?

No. Testing is recommended to occur three times per week on nonconsecutive days, regardless of when a team plays. If a team travels to a school and there is a CLIA certified location on site or nearby, testing can be pre-arranged to be performed at this location. It is recommended that conferences and schools make plans for such arrangements in advance. Otherwise, it is anticipated that testing would resume upon return to school, ideally with tests not separated by more than three days.

Has the NCAA COVID-19 Medical Advisory Group considered the possibility of PCR testing two times per week rather than antigen testing three times per week for indoor high transmission risk sports, especially given the differences in sensitivity?

The Advisory Group discussed this matter and concluded that even though PCR testing is more sensitive, schools should still consider testing three times per week for indoor high transmission risk sports using any combination of PCR and/or antigen testing.  *See exception below for student-athletes in indoor high transmission risk sports who practice universal masking and adherence to infection risk mitigation during all training and competition.

Can you clarify the differences between Tier 1 and Tier 2 as described in the Basketball Guidelines? Are there other tiers?

A recently published article in the British Journal of Sports Medicine provides the following explanation of the use of these references:

Tier 1: This is the highest exposure tier and consists of individuals for whom physical distancing and face coverings are not possible or effective during athletic training or competition. Examples of relevant individuals include student-athletes, coaches, athletic trainers and physical therapists, medical staff, equipment staff and officials.

Tier 2: This is a moderate exposure tier and consists of individuals who come into close contact with Tier 1 individuals but can reasonably maintain physical distance and use face coverings. Examples of relevant individuals include certain team staff (e.g., executives) and certain operational staff (e.g., security, event staff and league staff).

Tier 3: This is the lowest exposure tier and includes individuals who provide event services but do not come into close contact with Tier 1 individuals (and should this occur, would be reclassified into Tier 2). Examples of relevant individuals include certain operational staff (e.g., housekeeping, catering, sanitation and transportation) and media/broadcast.

When a Tier 1 individual tests positive, it is suggested that all other Tier 1 individuals quarantine as soon as the results are known for a period of 14 days, with contact tracing beginning immediately to determine who was subject to a high-risk exposure. Does this mean that all Tier 1 individuals are immediately quarantined for 14 days, or does it mean that all Tier 1 individuals are immediately quarantined, and if contract tracing determines they did not have a high-risk exposure, they can return to activity?

It means that all Tier 1 individuals are immediately quarantined for 14 days, and that contact tracing would proceed to determine if all such individuals should remain in quarantine and if there are additional individuals who may have had a high-risk exposure to an infected individual.

The Basketball Guidelines provide that individuals who previously tested positive for COVID-19 do not need to quarantine or get tested again for up to 90 days (for example, even after a high-risk exposure) as long as they do not develop symptoms again. Do these individuals move back into the testing pool after 90 days?

Emerging information reported on the CDC website suggests retesting of these individuals is unlikely to yield useful information, even if the person has had close contact with an infected person, so retesting is not suggested during the 90 days following a positive test unless individuals develop symptoms consistent with COVID-19 and there is no other cause identified for their symptoms. Emerging evidence also suggests that individuals can continue to test positive even after 90 days, yet there is a scarcity of reports that are consistent with individual reinfection. Antibody titers can fluctuate over time, and the clinical meaning of this fluctuation is uncertain. Given such data, in a given season for individuals who have tested positive, retesting should be performed only for those individuals who develop COVID-19 symptoms that are not otherwise explained by another condition. However, after this 90-day window, it is recommended that student-athletes and other individuals who experience a high-risk exposure enter quarantine for 14 days.

Is universal masking suggested during weight training and conditioning?

Yes, masking and physical distancing are suggested whenever feasible.

Will the NCAA be providing additional information about the testing of officials?    

Considerations related to the testing of officials are being developed, and we anticipate that information will be circulated soon. Testing protocols for officials will not be managed or overseen by the NCAA but will be coordinated through conferences and schools.

The NCAA has said it is exploring potential supply arrangements with one or more testing companies. Is updated information available?

We anticipate providing additional information the week of Oct. 12, 2020.

The Basketball Guidelines include direct reference to Division I basketball timelines. Are the guidelines meant to apply equally to Divisions II and III basketball?

Yes. The Basketball Guidelines apply to all divisions. Specific reference was made to the Division I calendar for purposes of clarity, as the Division I Council had just recently determined the structure of both the men’s and women’s basketball seasons.

The Basketball Guidelines organize testing recommendations by the phase of activity that a basketball team will go through, moving from out-of-season countable athletically related activities, to preseason practice, and then competition and postseason. These phases are clearly described in the Division I basketball calendar materials but are less clear in the flexible championship frameworks created by Divisions II and III. How will schools in those divisions know how to progress their testing protocols in response to activity changes?

Blanket waivers in both Divisions II and III created flexible playing and practice season frameworks for all sports. These frameworks are intended to facilitate maximum flexibility for member schools and conferences to configure practice and competitive seasons to occur at times that make the most sense for them. But this flexibility also means that the boundaries between practice and playing seasons are less clear than usual, so it is anticipated that testing protocol decisions will be made at the institutional or conference level based on an assessment of the nature of the practice/competition activities in which the team is involved.

If practice activities are generally consistent with out-of-season activities (strength and  conditioning, team meetings, limited skill instruction), it would be reasonable to interpret the Basketball Guidelines as suggesting surveillance testing for countable athletically related activities to be appropriate. If those practice activities are consistently on-court and resemble preseason activities that preclude scrimmages with teams outside the member school, then it would be reasonable to conclude that the Basketball Guidelines would suggest weekly testing until one week before competition begins. One week before the regular season begins, and extending into the postseason, testing would transition to three times per week.

Divisions II and III have provided scheduling flexibility for the conduct of the 2020-21 basketball season. As schools and conferences begin to configure and schedule practice and competition periods, do they need to build in and account for a separate transition period prior to the start of other preseason activities to adequately address health and safety concerns?

No. Previous guidance related to considerations around variability in the physiologic readiness of student-athletes, the conduct of mandatory medical examinations, and the importance of acclimatization and transition periods would apply equally in these circumstances. Schools are expected to establish an appropriate initial transition period during which student-athletes are afforded the time to properly progress through the physiologic and environmental stresses placed upon them as they return to required activities. It is anticipated that the period would be 7-10 days, completed before the start of any other required physical activities, and otherwise consistent with Interassociation Recommendations: Preventing Catastrophic Injury and Death in Collegiate Athletes. While it is expected that these principles would be applied any time there is a material break (e.g., greater than one week) between training segments, and that teams would work closely with applicable medical and strength and conditioning personnel to intentionally identify and apply appropriate protocols that best support the needs of their student-athletes, it has not been identified as necessary to include a separate transition period distinct from the preseason period within the broader scheduling calendar.

Sports other than basketball

As data and science evolves, formal modifications to previous resocialization documents will be presented through additional process and membership discussion. In the interim, the following approaches are offered for consideration.

All sports are classified as having low, intermediate or high risk for transmission, with appropriate testing strategies for each sport. Schools and conferences are urged to consider these strategies as they make decisions regarding return to practice and competition.

What are recommended testing protocols for sports other than basketball?

The NCAA COVID-19 Medical Advisory Group has assessed other sports and provided updated guidance based on emerging information. Importantly, the updated guidance differentiates high transmission risk sports that are played indoors versus outdoors. Further, the updated guidance differentiates high transmission risk indoor sports in which Tier 1 individuals universally mask versus Tier 1 individuals who do not universally mask during practice and competition. Highlighted text indicates a change from the Developing Standards document.

Sport classification

  • Low transmission risk: bowling, diving, equestrian, fencing, golf, rifle, skiing, swimming, tennis, track and field.
  • Intermediate transmission risk: acrobatics and tumbling, baseball, beach volleyball, cross country, gymnastics, softball, triathlon.
  • High transmission risk: basketball, field hockey, football, ice hockey, lacrosse, rowing, rugby, soccer, squash, volleyball, water polo, wrestling.

Testing strategies

  • Low transmission risk: Testing is performed in conjunction with a school plan for all students, plus additional testing for symptomatic and high infection risk individuals as warranted.
  • Intermediate transmission risk:
    • Out-of-season athletic activities: Testing is performed in conjunction with a school plan for all students, plus additional testing for symptomatic and high infection risk individuals as warranted.
    • In-season: Testing once weekly by PCR testing, or three times weekly by antigen testing. [This is increased from 25-50% surveillance testing every two weeks and adds antigen testing as an option.]
  • High transmission risk:
    • Out-of-season athletic activities: Surveillance PCR testing, for example, 25%-50% of athletes and Tier 1 nonathlete personnel every one to two weeks if physical distancing, masking and other protective features are not maintained, plus additional testing for symptomatic and high infection risk individuals as warranted. [The option of testing every one to two weeks was added, as certain local circumstances may suggest weekly surveillance testing as a medically preferred alternative.]
    • Preseason: Testing once weekly by PCR testing, or three times weekly by antigen testing. [The antigen testing is added as an option.]
    • Regular and postseason, outdoor sports: Testing once weekly by PCR testing, or three times weekly by antigen testing. [The antigen test has been added.]
    • Regular and postseason, indoor sports: Testing three times weekly on nonconsecutive days, beginning one week prior to the first competition. PCR or antigen testing may be used. If all training and competition are done with universal masking and adherence to infection risk mitigation, then testing can be considered in a manner consistent with outdoor high transmission risk sports. [This recommendation places all indoor high transmission risk sports on a testing recommendation protocol that is consistent with basketball, and it represents an increase in suggested testing frequency from the Developing Standards document, which did not differentiate indoor from outdoor sports. It also differentiates indoor high transmission risk sports where universal masking and adherence to infection risk mitigation occurs in all Tier 1 individuals even during training and competition.]

Basketball oversight committees maintain maximum contest limitations

The Division I Men’s and Women’s Basketball Oversight Committees reaffirmed their positions on the maximum number of games teams can play in the upcoming 2020-21 season.

Selection dates, bracket size proposed by DIII Championships Committee

The Division III Championships Committee on Tuesday proposed selection dates and bracket sizes for the 2021 NCAA winter championships. All recommendations will move forward through the governance process, where they must be supported by...

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