How much fun would it be if the next college basketball season started with the March Madness we missed?
Former Cincinnati Bearcats and current West Virginia Mountaineers head coach Bob Huggins suggested starting the 2020-21 college basketball season with the NCAA Tournament during an appearance on The Cook and Joe Show on 93.7 The Fan in Pittsburgh.
“Let’s face it, there’s a great chance we’re not going to have college football. Putting that many people together is going to be rough. I wouldn’t want to have to make that decision. So, why don’t we start the season off with the NCAA Tournament?” Huggins said. “(The NCAA) can get its money and distribute it to the schools. It solves a lot of problems. … They know who was in it and who was going to play who. They know where we were going to play. What, it’s going to take three weekends? Big deal. Really, kids aren’t going to miss class that much. You’re going to basically play on the weekends. … It would affect the low-majors and mid-majors – I think – to a degree. Generally speaking, their NCAA representative is their conference tournament winner. Heck, let them have their own tournament. Let them play their conference tournament.”
What about seniors on last season’s teams?
“Let them come back and play,” Huggins said. “Why can’t you make it their choice? We had three seniors. I guarantee you all three would want to play, and it would fill a void that was left when they couldn’t play. I don’t see what that would hurt to let those guys play.”
Huggins, who coached the Cincinnati Bearcats from 1989 to 2005, earned his 879th career victory in February – to tie North Carolina’s Dean Smith for sixth all-time among Division I coaches.
Earlier this year, Huggins expressed his frustration with players misled to go pro and the deadline to declare in a conversation with Jon Rothstein on the College Hoops Today podcast. In the same podcast, Huggins talked about how much things have changed since he was the head coach at UC.
In 16 seasons at UC, Huggins’ record was 399–127. The Bearcats reached the Elite Eight three times under Huggins and the Final Four once (1991-92).
Cincinnati football coach Luke Fickell talks effects of coronavirus on spring practice.