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Big 12 cancels conference tournament

The conference planned on playing the remainder of the tournament without fans before calling it all altogether on Thursday morning.

NCAA Basketball: Big 12 Tournament-TCU vs Kansas State William Purnell-USA TODAY Sports

After playing the opening round of the Big 12 tournament on Wednesday evening in Kansas City, the conference pulled players for the Texas Longhorns and Texas Tech Red Raiders off the court on Thursday morning as other conferences, including the AAC, Atlantic 10, Big Ten, CAA, Conference USA, MAC, SEC, and WAC, canceled their tournaments outright.

The plan as of Wednesday evening was to play the games without fans, allowing only a handful of family members and friends. However, with developments surrounding the spread of coronavirus accelerating in recent hours with Texas stopping access for fans to sporting events and the NBA suspending its seasons, among other developments, the Big 12 was left with little choice, canceling the men’s and women’s tournaments.

So at 11 a.m. Central, a half hour before Texas and Texas Tech were set to play, the conference announced a press availability to discuss the cancelation. Texas players and coaches will now return to Austin later on Thursday with an increased possibility that the NCAA and NIT also cancel those tournaments after the CBI called off its tournament on Wednesday.

If the NIT does happen as scheduled and the Longhorns are selected, Texas will not host games at the Erwin Center.