If the ACC has its way, the Clemson men’s basketball team will make the NCAA Tournament this year, and so will everybody else.
In a surprise twist, coaches in the ACC voted unanimously Wednesday for every Division I team in college basketball to be allowed to participate in the NCAA Tournament this coming season. This will only be for the 2021 NCAA Tournament.
Official statements on the proposal are expected to be released later on Wednesday, according to CBS basketball writer Jon Rothstein, who first reported the news.
After the NCAA canceled last year’s basketball tournament, its biggest moneymaker, the ACC views this as a way to celebrate college basketball at its finest, while also awarding programs who last year may have earned a bid to the tournament but never got the opportunity to play in it because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Clemson last played in the NCAA Tournament in 2018, when it advanced to the Sweet 16.
Clemson head coach Brad Brownell confirmed to The Clemson Insider last week that the ACC was moving forward and it wants to play basketball this year. He said the ACC put together an advisory board that has a couple of coaches and athletic directors on it as they try to move forward with a little more direction and in a smaller group as they start making decisions.
The ACC head coaches in men’s basketball have met every Wednesday since March to discuss ways to play this coming year.
“To be honest with you, most of the ADs’ time has been put on football, so just now they are beginning to focus on basketball and what that is going to look like. But we have had great discussion. I have been in the league ten years now and this is the most conversation we have ever had amongst head coaches in the ten years I have been doing this.”
“We need a little bit of direction from the NCAA because we don’t know,” he continued. “Are they going to move the NCAA Tournament back or are they going to keep it in March? That’s where the rubber is going to meet the road. I know the NCAA would like to keep it in March, but if they have to move it then that gives you the opportunity to move your season back even further, gives you a little more opportunity to make changes, to leave more open dates for postponements if you have to. So, I think it is almost … we need some direction at the end of the season in terms of the NCAA Tournament versus just going ahead and planning what you are going to do at the beginning of the season.”
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