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UCLA basketball game canceled due to COVID-19 protocols

Players from UCLA and Alabama during the NCAA Tournament
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The UCLA men’s basketball game against Alabama State was canceled on Wednesday due to COVID-19 protocols, as sports leagues across the country face rising cases. 

UCLA initially announced that head coach Mick Cronin would not be at the game after entering COVID-19 protocols and associate head coach Darren Savino would be the acting head coach in his place. 

Hours later, the team said the game would be canceled altogether due to COVID-19 protocols.

The canceled game brings uncertainty for a Saturday game scheduled to take place at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas against North Carolina. 

A spokesperson for the UCLA’s athletic department said there was no outbreak of COVID-19 on the team as of Wednesday, but more testing is underway as a precaution, The Los Angeles Times reported

​​“It’s tough right now obviously because … it seems like it’s sort of going back to normal, but then we have what happened last week,” Bruins guard Jules Bernard said after a previous game was canceled with Washington due to COVID-19. “But I think we’ve all done a good job of staying safe, we pretty much just hang around each other, for the most part.”

“So we’re not really that worried because we never really branch out like that and we’re more together most of the time, but … obviously after last week, we had a little talk, just keep being safe and make sure that, for each other and for our school, just keep being available to play,” he added.

UCLA has won eight of nine games since a big loss against Gonzaga earlier in the season.

Cornell also cancelled a men’s basketball game set for this weekend as the campus was placed on “Alert Level Red” amid a COVID-19 outbreak. 

Professional sports leagues across the U.S. are dealing with a COVID-19 crisis, as a rash of cases is forcing the NHL and NBA to postpone games, and NFL teams to scramble to fill roster spots.

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