Wednesday, March 19, 2003

NCAA games will go on despite war

TV still subject to change

The Associated Press

INDIANAPOLIS - The NCAA will not postpone or move any men's and women's basketball tournament games or other events if the United States goes to war with Iraq.

"From everything we know right now, it's in the best interests of the country to go forward," NCAA president Myles Brand said Tuesday, a day after telling reporters the NCAA was still exploring options.

The tournament games that begin this week "will go on as scheduled without any changes in time, venue or format," Brand said.

Brand consulted Tuesday with Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge and members of the NCAA's governing bodies before deciding.

"We felt that this was the right decision and have no hesitation whatsoever having made it," he said.

The NCAA has spent four months reviewing options in case of war. The latest ultimatum President Bush delivered to Saddam Hussein in a television speech Monday night "heightened the urgency of our considerations," Brand said

"We are also concerned that life go on as normal," Brand added.

Brand kept open the possibility of reconsidering if unforeseeable threats emerge in coming days.

Because of the current security climate, the NCAA is taking "extraordinary steps to ensure the safety of the athletes and fans," Brand said.

He said it was up to television networks whether their coverage of the tournaments take second billing to war coverage if a U.S.-led coalition attacks Iraq.

CBS holds the rights to the men's tournament.

But the network, which is owned by Viacom, has discussed switching the games to ESPN or other outlets if CBS needs more air time for war coverage.

ESPN and ESPN2 already are scheduled to show the women's tournament.

The first men's game, a play-in contest, was Tuesday night.

The rest of the first round begins Thursday.

The women's tournament begins Saturday.

Enter our bracket contest and get complete tournament coverage

West national player of year
Xavier foe plays hurry-up
McGuff draws on Irish experience

UC waiting for shots to fall

Coles' humor intact despite Miami struggles
New coordinator, new defense for Miami

DAUGHERTY: Can war and sports coincide?
NCAA games will go on despite war
NCAA games on local TV
Hunter has IUPUI in promised land
Pitino back after 6-year absence
Prosser: Deacons need wake-up
UNC-Asheville scores first NCAA upset
Western Ky. wants to make its mark
All women's games on ESPN
NIT: Prodigal Georgetown wins opener

Infection strikes Turfway horses

Haynes to pitch opener
Ballpark open house this weekend
Graves trying to get the hang of starting
Reds Notebook: 10 more must go by Opening Day
Reds 7, Phillies 7
Other Spring Training Games
Spring Training Standings
Baseball cancels series in Japan
Baseball Notebook: McGraw undergoes surgery

NFL considers expanding playoffs

Moeller's Duncan first-team all-Ohio
Ohio boys state tournament schedule

Highlands' Neltner first team in Ky.
Faust back in Sweet 16 with senior-laden St. Henry
Rose Hill has plenty to prove at Sweet 16
NewCath girls win Ninth Region
Campbell Co. girls win 10th region