NCAA Tournament canceled along with remaining winter and spring championships

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FILE – In this March 18, 2015, file photo, the NCAA logo is displayed at center court as work continues at The Consol Energy Center in Pittsburgh, for the NCAA college basketball tournament. The NCAA took a significant step toward allowing all Division I athletes to transfer one time without sitting out a season of competition. A plan to change the waiver process is expected to be presented to the Division I Council in April, 2020. If adopted, new criteria would go into effect for the 2020-21 academic year and be a boon for athletes in high-profile sports such as football and men’s and women’s basketball. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic, File)

AUSTIN (KXAN) — The NCAA is canceling the remaining 2020 seasons for winter and spring sports, including the NCAA Tournament, according to a statement from NCAA Director Mark Emmert.

The decision is based on the “evolving threat” of COVID-19 in the United States.

The cancellation means the NCAA basketball tournaments will not be played, nor will the baseball and softball College World Series.

Earlier Thursday afternoon, the Duke University and University of Kansas athletics departments opted to suspend all athletic competition for the foreseeable future in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Arizona State and Virginia quickly followed suit.

Kansas is the consensus No. 1 team in the polls. Duke was projected to be anywhere from a No. 2 to a No. 4 seed in the NCAA Tournament. Those programs’ decisions created a domino effect

In a statement, Duke Head Men’s Basketball Coach Mike Krzyzewski said “we emphatically support the decision.”

Kansas head coach Bill Self said in a statement — “while we are disappointed for the players, it was the right and necessary thing to do. As I said yesterday (Wednesday), this is bigger than a sport or championship.”

The NCAA announced Wednesday that it expected to play the men’s and women’s tournament next week, but would do so with only family and essential staff in the stands.

On Wednesday evening, the sports world’s approach to the COVID-19 pandemic changed when the NBA suspended its season following a positive coronavirus test for Utah Jazz player Rudy Gobert. Most of the other major U.S. sports leagues suspended or adjusted their schedules on Thursday.

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