—Spread check: Coronavirus by 2,020.
—Louisville’s five seniors (and one departing junior) could have handled seeing their Cardinal careers end with a loss in the NCAA tournament. This will be tougher to stomach.
—There will be no postseason run for the U of L women’s team, but their 2019-20 season should still be remembered for a long time.
—Chris Mack shared some thoughts with Cardinal fans on Twitter.
—The NCAA has not yet completely ruled out the idea of building and releasing a 68-team 2020 NCAA Tournament bracket.
—Danielle Lerner writes for The Athletic about the scene when Louisville found out that March Madness was canceled. It includes Jordan Nwora thinking the trophy presentation for Florida State was just as stupid as we all thought it was.
Mack sat in a chair in the lobby scrolling through his phone for updates as his wife, Christi, and son, Brayden, noshed on Chick-Fil-A next to him. “Depressed,” Mack replied when asked to describe his state of mind. Mostly, he said, he feels badly for his five seniors, whose final college seasons would soon be cut short. Assistant coach Dino Gaudio said he had fielded a distressed call from senior guard Ryan McMahon’s father.
When the NCAA news broke, Ryan McMahon, a fifth-year senior, tweeted: not like this.
Some 30 feet away from Mack, junior forward Jordan Nwora sat surrounded by his parents, Alex and Amy, and his two younger sisters. The family had come to Greensboro from Buffalo, N.Y., to watch Jordan play in his final conference tournament before he leaves school for the NBA Draft this spring. Now his postseason was over before it had even started. “I feel so bad for him,” Alex said. “This was going to be his last opportunity.”
Meanwhile, word had reached Louisville players that Florida State, the ACC’s regular-season champion, had been presented with a trophy on the Greensboro Coliseum court despite the fact the tournament was canceled before the Seminoles’ quarterfinal game tipped off against Clemson. (As the regular-season champion, FSU would have gotten the conference’s automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.) “That’s the worst part about it,” Jordan said, shaking his head. “That’s so stupid. They were about to play a team that beat them too.”
—Gary Parrish writes for CBS about understanding the decision to shut down March Madness but also struggling with the sadness that comes with no tournament.
—Richard Pitino will return to Minnesota for at least one more season as the Golden Gophers’ head coach.
—No one has any idea what anyone’s roster is going to look like next season, but here are the first 2021 national championship odds from SportsBetting.ag anyway:
—We found out today that the NCAA’s final attempt to save the Big Dance was going to be a 16-team tournament stretched out over a long weekend in Atlanta. As painful as this is, Louisville potentially being team #17 and missing out on that would have been worse.
—Sports have always been there to help/distract/entertain during tough times. This time will be different.
—The NCAA has granted an extra year of eligibility to all spring sports athletes who had their seasons taken away.
The NCAA will grant an extra year of eligibility for student-athletes who participated in spring sports. pic.twitter.com/vCRLzhSOe0— Jon Rothstein (@JonRothstein) March 13, 2020
The NCAA is also reportedly looking into doing something similar with winter sports athletes who had their seasons cut short, but that situation is a little more convoluted since those seasons were almost entirely completed.
Honestly, at this point they should just grant Ryan McMahon a lifetime waiver to play at Louisville for as long as he wants.
—Louisville is No. 15 in Gary Parrish’s final top 25 and one rankings for CBS.
—No March Madness is going to be a massive financial hit for the NCAA, whose reserve has been drained by a slew of recent lawsuits.
—I have no idea if this will ultimately be worth watching, but I’m definitely going to watch it.
—Brad Brownell will be returning to Clemson for an 11th season.
—Tim Brando called Thursday’s half-completed contest between Creighton and St. John’s the “most bizarre” game he’s ever covered.
—These guys knew we needed this picture today.
South Florida (305/954) ✅— Teddy Bridgewater (@teddyb_h2o) March 13, 2020
University of Louisville ✅
32nd Pick in the NFL Draft ✅
It’s crazy how I’m the “old guy” now lol standing next to this young GOAT @Lj_era8 AKA Mr. MVP . Don’t ever stop my boy! pic.twitter.com/GZIcN4MTcM
—Last team to win a Big East basketball game in 2019-20? Your DePaul Blue Demons.
—Friday Irrelevance is relevant:
—Pat Forde writes about all the college senior athletes who will never get their proper sendoff, including his son.
—No College World Series already hurts, but it’s really going to resonate once we get into the late spring/early summer.
—Bobby Miller is, obviously, already feeling the heartbreak.
Truly heartbroken. We have put in so much hard work for each other. This team is something special. Wake me up from this nightmare— Bobby Miller (@BMilled15) March 12, 2020
—Washington County’s Jatavian Churchill is joining the Louisville football team as a preferred walk-on.
—Matt Norlander also has a really good read on his personal struggles with a non-mad March.
—Jazmine Jones has a message for the Louisville fans who have supported her for the last four years.
University Of Louisville Forever and Always ❤️ pic.twitter.com/pTEYz7bNqH— Jazmine Jones (@23_JJones) March 13, 2020
—You know the offseason is already in full swing when Rick Pitino has been brought up as a candidate for the recent vacancies at both Iona and Grand Canyon.
—Here’s an updated list of the local fish frys that have been canceled or are now only doing to-go orders.
—Jordan Nwora with a parting message for the fans.
—The city of Louisville is offering free frozen meals to citizens over the age of 60.
—The Big Ten has walked back its initial announcement of canceling all spring sports. Instead, the league now says all athletics will be suspended until at least April 6.
—What a year!
—The Louisville tourism bureau says the city currently stands to lose $57.6 million after conventions and meetings have pulled out Metro Louisville over COVID-19 coronavirus fears.
—And finally, I’ve already got some ideas for the best ways to spend a weird month(s) ahead on this website. If you have your own ideas, feel free to share them in the comments. I’m open to anything fun and creative at this point.