NCAA: No fans allowed to attend March Madness games

(WVLT) -- NCAA President Mark Emmert released a statement in the wake of growing concerns over coronavirus.

NCAA President Mark Emmert released a statement in the wake of growing concerns over coronavirus. / (MGN)

"The NCAA continues to assess the impact of COVID-19 in consultation with public health officials and our COVID-19 advisory panel. Based on their advice and my discussions with the NCAA Board of Governors, I have made the decision to conduct our upcoming championship events, including the Division I men's and women's basketball tournaments, with only essential staff and limited family attendance," he announced on Twitter.

Emmert said the decision was "based on the current understanding of how COVID-19 is progressing in the United States" and he added that it was in the "best interest of public health."

Shortly after the NCAA's announcement, the SEC announced that Wednesday's game would go on as planned. However, they said that "we are evaluating plans for the remainder of the tournament."

There were at least 9 cases of coronavirus in Tennessee as of March 11. The CDC released guidelines on preventative measures.

Guidance released by the CDC advises practicing preventative measures to help stop an outbreak in your community by:

- Avoiding contact with people who are sick
- If you are sick, stay home
- Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue
- Clean frequently touched surfaces daily
- Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
- Use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol

For more information regarding CDC recommendations click here.

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