The cancellation of the league’s marquee event offers another perspective on how quickly concerns over the spread of COVID-19 have escalated. As late as Wednesday night, the conference’s tournament was in full operation, with fans in attendance at the Greensboro Coliseum even as other sports leagues were canceling games or severely restricting attendance.
But at 8 p.m. Wednesday, the league announced its decision to limit attendance to the remainder of the games to “essential tournament personnel, limited school administrators and student-athlete guests, broadcast television and credentialed media members present.”
On Thursday morning, shortly before 11 a.m., Swofford told media that the games would continue, but that the situation was fluid. Before tipoff of the first quarterfinal game of the afternoon, Clemson and Florida State took the floor in front of a nearly vacant arena before the game – and tournament – was called off.
Georgia Tech did not participate in the event, having accepted the NCAA’s penalty of a postseason ban for recruiting violations.