Virginia State University has decided it’s not safe for its basketball teams to play this season.
The NCAA Division II university in Ettrick announced Tuesday that, after originally postponing the start of its men’s and women’s basketball seasons, neither team will suit up during 2020-21.
"It is not a safe situation for our student-athletes and staff to be put in harm's way," women’s basketball coach James Hill, Jr., whose team went 10-20 last season, said in the athletic department’s announcement. "The uncertainty and wide spread of Covid-19, along with the high-risk of conditioning injury, makes opting out the right decision."
The announcement came on the day that the basketball players were scheduled to return to campus. The Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association, of which Virginia State is part of, announced on Nov. 18 that its 16-game conference schedule will begin January 9 and the conference tournaments will be held from Feb. 22-27.
"This was a difficult decision, however the VSU Athletics Administration has been consistent in our messaging; the student-athletes, coaches and staff continues to be our top priority," associate vice president for intercollegiate athletics Peggy Davis said. "Their health, safety, and well-being are non-negotiable."