Big Ten Conference Statement

Women's BIG TEN Tournament 2019:Maryland vs Iowa at Bankers Life Fieldhouse on March 10, 2019 (Photo by Andre Hollis / fi360 News)

The Big Ten Conference announced today that it will be canceling the remainder of the Big Ten Men’s Basketball Tournament, effective immediately.

The Big Ten Conference will use this time to work with the appropriate medical experts and institutional leadership to determine next steps for moving forward in regard to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The main priority of the Big Ten Conference continues to be the health, safety and wellness of our student-athletes, coaches, administrators, fans and media as we continue to monitor all developing and relevant information on the COVID-19 virus.

Women’s BIG TEN Tournament 2019: Congrats Iowa you are now Big Ten ChampionMaryland vs Iowa at Bankers Life Fieldhouse on March 10, 2019 (Photo by Andre Hollis / fi360 News)

Commissioner Kevin Warren

Press Conference

The verbiage in the release is ‘canceling’. The NBA said ‘suspend’. Is there any chance that later on you might revisit concluding the tournament?
COMMISSIONER WARREN: I would say no. I think it’s important, we wanted to make it clear, that we’re canceling it because, again, first and foremost we need to make sure we protect the health and safety of you all, of our student-athletes, of our administrators, of our fans.

I wish I knew more information. This is a fluid situation. I can’t recall the last time we’ve had a pandemic, but we do here. It’s really important that we’re thoughtful. If it comes down that I overreacted or we overreacted, I’m comfortable with that.

I think as I sit here today in these kind of situations, you can never overreact from a safety standpoint, and I think we needed to make sure we went to the highest level to give us a chance to deal with this acute problem.

I believe the ACC just crowned Florida State the No. 1 seed, the tournament champion. I was wondering if you had any plans to crown a champion when there wasn’t a tournament played?
COMMISSIONER WARREN: As I sit here today, it is difficult to crown a champion if you don’t compete. We do have three champions from the regular season. That’s the other thing, when you think about it, we were blessed with an incredible Big Ten basketball season, the number of teams that played well. We have those memories to really think about as we sit here today.

I don’t think I would recommend to our staff or crown a champion from the tournament because we didn’t get a chance to play the tournament.