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Report: NCAA Pushing For November 25th Start For College Basketball

We might finally be starting to get some answers about next season.

NCAA Football: Illinois at Wisconsin Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Earlier this week, Matt Norlander of CBS Sports broke some big news regarding college basketball and where things might be heading for the 2020-’21 season. He reported that the NCAA is currently targeting a November 25th start date for the season, which would be just a few weeks after things normally tip-off.

He wrote in pertinent part:

The NCAA’s women’s basketball oversight committee and men’s basketball oversight committee jointly agreed on Tuesday to propose Nov. 25 as the start date for the 2020-21 college basketball season, sources told CBS Sports.

Nov. 25 is the day before Thanksgiving.

“It was a hard proposal and they all left [the call] saying the 25th was the date they’re going to take,” one source said.

The proposal will eventually be sent to the Division I Council, which is scheduled to meet on Sept. 16. An approving vote by the Council on that day would make Nov. 25 college basketball’s new official opening day, but sources have stressed that flexibility in the coming 6-8 weeks will be paramount. If the environment in the United States and college athletics changes for the worse in regard to the coronavirus pandemic, men’s and women’s basketball will have their season starts delayed as necessary.

Based on how things have gone over the last few weeks, it’s hard to feel optimistic about college basketball starting before Thanksgiving. The Big Ten’s postponement (cancellation) of football has been a mess and schools across the nation continue to run into COVID-19 related issues, including Ohio State reportedly having nearly 900 (!!!) positive student tests earlier this week. It’s just hard to feel good about college sports getting off the ground.

However, it’s encouraging to see some real dates and a plan emerging. And unlike football, the leagues appear to be working together to find a solution that works for everyone. All of this should at least give us a timeline to look at moving forward.

Whether things go as planned remains to be seen and many more cards will fall over the coming weeks. But at least it’s starting to look like college basketball might happen.