Tennesse Head Coach Rick Barnes has tested positive for COVID-19. This will put a pause on the Volunteers’ basketball team activities just before the season was ready to start. The games they were scheduled to play against Charlotte, VCU, and Gonzaga have all been canceled. If all things go well the team will resume team activities and play their first game on December 4th against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. There were multiple other positive tests within the Tennesse program, but only Barnes was announced. He becomes yet another major college basketball head coach to test positive this month.
Tennessee has suspended all team activities because of positive COVID-19 tests. Head coach Rick Barnes, 66, has tested positive.
— Gary Parrish (@GaryParrishCBS) November 23, 2020
The main goal here is to make sure Barnes, his players, and his staff are healthy and protected to the best of the program’s ability. This does bring in some major concerns for the fate of college basketball this year. The season has not even begun yet and positive tests have begun to see an increase in number. The continued hope from the NCAA and its programs is that continued testing will help limit the spread of the deadly virus.
College Basketball is poised to start this week and a full season may be messy and complicated for the NCAA. Talks of a bubble for the NCAA Tournament will continue as programs look for answers to these hard questions. The most important thing is to attempt to keep these student-athletes, the staff, and their families as safe as possible. We here at Def Pen will continue to monitor and report what happens with the NCAA during the Coronavirus Pandemic. We could be in for one of the wildest years ever in college basketball.