According to multiple national analysts, Jon Rothstein, Jeff Goodman and Pat Forde to name a few, the ACC men’s basketball coaches are proposing an expanded 2021 NCAA Tournament that would include every Division I team. This means 346 of the 353 schools that are eligible in Division I would get a chance at competing for a national championship.
“The ACC has already had discussions with Dan Gavitt and the NCAA regarding an NCAA Tournament in 2021 featuring every Division 1 team in college basketball,” Rothstein reported. “All ACC programs agreed earlier today to have every single Division 1 team in the 2021 NCAA Tournament. This is being done to “celebrate” college basketball.”
According to Pat Forde, the “plan would turn conference championship week into the opening round of the Big Dance. From there the field is reduced to 64-68 by the following week.”
The ACC Coaches voted Wednesday to propose the expansion, led by Duke Head Coach Mike Krzyzewski. The main reason for this unique tournament would be to avoid non-conference games. Although conference play may seem reasonable, it can also make some team’s seasons a lot more difficult than others.
Other primary factors the coaches considered were the health and safety of players, the incentive that there will be games leading to the tournament, and that they need to be unified as a sport, giving a chance to every Division I team.
“This is not a regular season,” Krzyzewski said. “It is clearly an irregular season that will require something different. Our sport needs to be agile and creative.”
— Chris Mack (@CoachChrisMack) September 9, 2020
As of now, the all-D1 NCAA tournament and conference play proposals have been the only serious contenders for what the 2020-21 basketball season will look like. If no plan comes out at all, the NCAA will be looking at another huge loss in revenue.
“Men’s college basketball produces 98% or more of the money for the NCAA,” Krzyzewski told ESPN Radio. “We need to have the tournament.”
College basketball fanatics around the country have expressed their opinions on what could be the most interesting March Madness we’d ever see.
Much coming from social media, many have tweeted this daunting proposal is a recipe for disaster. They expressed an additional 289 teams would be an overload the NCAA wouldn’t be able to handle. Not only, but it would also create many terrible mismatches in the early games of the tournament.
Seemingly to agree, NCAA’s preference is still to have a traditional NCAA Tournament field in 2021, according to CBS Sports.
The NCAA Division I Council will announce a decision on the format for winter sports, including college basketball, on Sept. 16.
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