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Men’s 2020 SEC Tournament canceled due to coronavirus concerns

There will be no games in Nashville today — or for the rest of the week.

NCAA Basketball: SEC Conference Tournament-Tennessee vs Auburn Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports

The Florida Gators men’s basketball team was set to play in second round action in the 2020 SEC Tournament on Thursday, facing off against a No. 13-seeded Georgia team that won on Wednesday night.

Except there won’t be a second round. Or a remainder of the 2020 SEC Tournament.

Just before noon on Thursday, the conference announced that it would cancel the remainder of the tournament, “based on the latest developments and the continued spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19).”

What this means for the NCAA Tournament — currently set to occur without fans, though that would seem to be an outdated decision after 24 hours of rapid developments that have included moves made by the federal government and most major sports organizations — is anyone’s guess. Florida was likely to make the 68-team NCAA Tournament field no matter how it fared in Nashville, but a delay to the the tournament or a shrinking of it might throw that into jeopardy.

The NCAA Tournament has been held annually since 1939, with no major delays or cancellations in its history. The SEC Tournament’s last major rescheduling came in 2008, when a tornado that hit downtown Atlanta moved the tournament to Georgia Tech’s campus and led to Georgia improbably winning three games in two days to claim the title.