Well-Being Prevention & Cures

NCAA basketball tournament to be played without fans due to coronavirus fears

getty: A general view as Yeshiva plays Worcester Polytechnic Institute in the first half during the NCAA Division III Men's Basketball Championship

Story at a glance

  • The university said Thursday it will prohibit fans from attending the games Friday and Saturday based on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s guidelines.
  • The first three cases of COVID-19 were confirmed in Maryland Thursday.
  • More than 250 cases have been confirmed in the U.S. with 14 deaths.

Johns Hopkins University is hosting rounds of the NCAA Division III men’s basketball tournament this weekend without fans, as the number of COVID-19 cases in the United States continues to grow. 

“In light of Maryland’s recently confirmed cases of COVID-19, and based on the CDC guidance for large gatherings, we have determined that it is prudent to hold this tournament without spectators,” the university said in a statement Thursday

“We are not making any determination about other JHU events at this time; while we await further guidance from public health authorities, we will be assessing large events on a case-by-case basis.” 

The school is offering refunds to those who had purchased tickets for the games Friday and Saturday in Baltimore. 

The first three cases of COVID-19 were confirmed in Maryland Thursday, prompting Gov. Larry Hogan (R) to declare a state of emergency. Maryland officials said Friday they have launched a widespread search of individuals who may have been exposed to the novel coronavirus by one of the three Montgomery County residents who have been infected. 

The move comes as events involving large gatherings of people are being canceled across the country to avoid spreading the virus. At least 256 confirmed cases have been reported in the U.S. with 14 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University COVID-19 tracker.


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