The NCAA continues to monitor the coronavirus and will decide "in the coming days" what effects the outbreak will have on the upcoming men's and women's basketball championships, the organization said Tuesday.
Via its Inside the NCAA Twitter feed, the NCAA posted that it is consulting with public health officials and its coronavirus advisory panel to evaluate how the outbreak could impact the basketball tournaments.
The men's tournament is scheduled to begin March 17-18 with the First Four in Dayton, Ohio, where governor Mike DeWine on Tuesday recommended indoor sporting events go on without spectators to avoid spreading the virus. Cleveland is one of the men's first- and second-round sites.
Early sites also include Spokane, Wash., a state where U.S. News & World Report said 24 people have died from the coronavirus as of late Tuesday.
The Mid-American Conference announced Tuesday its men's and women's tournaments will be held before a restricted audience in Cleveland. Only credentialed institutional personnel and media, student-athletes family members and official team party members will be allowed to attend.
The Big West Conference also announced its men's tournament, starting Thursday in Anaheim, Calif., and women's tournament, beginning Tuesday night at Long Beach State University, would be played without spectators.
Earlier Tuesday, the Ivy League canceled its men's and women's basketball conference tournaments due to concerns about the spread of the coronavirus. The NCAA stood behind that decision.
"NCAA member schools and conferences make their own decisions regarding regular season and conference tournament play," NCAA president Mark Emmert said in a statement. "As we have stated, we will make decisions on our events based on the best, most current public health guidance available."
Michigan State coach Tom Izzo told media members he felt bad for anyone who had been stricken by the coronavirus and was amazed at how "this has taken off."
"I'm just gonna wait and see what the people say and do whatever they say," said Izzo, whose Spartans were ranked ninth in the latest AP Top 25 rankings. "If they say we play in empty arenas, we play in empty arenas. If they say we play in full arenas, we play in full arenas."
Among the conferences hosting league tournaments this week is the Big 12 in Kansas City.
"We haven't been told that we shouldn't play the tournament, and we haven't been told we shouldn't play it in front of an assembled crowd," Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby said via the Kansas City Star. "If we are told those things, obviously we're going to yield to the best medical advice that we can get.
"We want to keep our players and coaches and staff members and fans as healthy as possible."
Besides Cleveland and Spokane, other men's tournament first- and second-round sites include Albany, N.Y.; St. Louis; Tampa, Fla.; Greensboro N.C.; Omaha, Neb.; and Sacramento, Calif. Indianapolis, Los Angeles, Houston and New York City are the regional sites, with the Final Four set for Atlanta on April 4 and 6.
The women's tournament is scheduled to start with first- and second-round games March 20-23 at on-campus sites. The regional locations are Dallas; Greenville, S.C.; Portland, Ore.; and Fort Wayne, Ind. The Women's Final Four is set for New Orleans on April 3 and 5.