COVID-19 concerns have caused the Texas A&M men’s basketball program to withdraw from a season-opening event.
The Dallas News reports that the Aggies have backed out of the Bad Boy Mowers Crossover Classic, scheduled for Nov. 25 through 27. The event is set for Sioux Falls, S.D., a state where, according to local data, the 7-day COVID-19 test positivity rate is above 20 percent as of this writing.
A&M athletic director Ross Bjork cited rising COVID cases as the reason for the decision to back out.
"The health and safety of our student-athletes and staff is the top priority for our entire athletics department, and given the current public health crisis, we have decided to cancel our trip to the Bad Boy Mowers Crossover Classic," Bjork said in a statement. "In order to keep our program as safe as possible as we start the season, we sought input from public health experts and our medical team after seeing the rise of cases in all of our communities, but especially in the state of South Dakota. Based on their advice, we felt it was most prudent to stay in Texas and work to schedule a home game at Reed Arena. We are thankful for the hard work and understanding of the tournament organizers."
The Aggies will begin the 2020-21 campaign at home on Nov. 29 against New Orleans.