Home Sports Mike Krzyzewski behind ACC push to have every team in NCAA Tournament

Mike Krzyzewski behind ACC push to have every team in NCAA Tournament

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March Madness will look a lot different next year if the ACC gets its way.

The men’s basketball coaches in the ACC voted to propose to that all Div. I teams make the NCAA tournament in 2021 in response to the coronavirus pandemic that led to the cancellation of the tournament last March.

According to ESPN, Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski is leading the movement, which received unanimous support from the conference’s men’s coaches.

The vote was first reported by Stadium. The plan would also eliminate non-conference games.

“The safety of our players is paramount,” Louisville coach Chris Mack said in a statement supporting the plan. “The ability to incentivize the regular season without mandating a select number of non-conference and conference games provides options and flexibility for all member institutions. As ACC head coaches, we strongly believe it’s in the game’s best interest to have an all-inclusive 2021 NCAA Tournament.”

Others have also gone public with the plan, including Wake Forest’s Steve Forbes.

“This is what’s best for our student-athletes, fans and the sport of college basketball,’’ Forbes wrote on Twitter. “It will incentivize everyone that loves and cares about our great sport during these unprecedented times, and it will provide a safe environment for all to participate in.”

Syracuse head coach Jim Boeheim told Stadium: “This is a unique time and it’s time to do something different.”

Holding a tournament for more than 350 teams would be in stark contrast to the one floated by NCAA president Mark Emmert. In August, Emmert discussed the possibility of a smaller tournament than the standard 68-team format, which would be held in a bubble similar to the one being used for the NBA and WNBA playoffs.

“Starting with 64 teams is tough,’’ Emmert told the NCAA’s website. “Thirty-two, OK, maybe that’s a manageable number. Sixteen, certainly manageable. But you’ve got to figure out those logistics. There’s doubtlessly ways to make that work… It’s obviously expensive to do that. But we’re not going to hold a championship in a way that puts student-athletes at risk. If we need to do a bubble model and that’s the only way we can do it, then we’ll figure that out.”

The NCAA is expected to announce how winter sports will look next week.



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