Daily Noontime: Tuesday, March 31st, 2020

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By Matt Noonan | @NoontimeNation 

Welcome to Tuesday, everyone – how is everyone doing?

From a quick glance outside the window, it appears as if the sun is shining, which is something positive to report, right?

Yes, it will be a bit cold today, so if you do wander out of your home, condo or apartment (or wherever you’re hunkering down these days), please bundle up and wear an extra hat.

And now, let’s get to some news (and links) to start your day!


Noontime’s Headlines for Tuesday, March 31st, 2020 


Noontime’s Recent Links!


On this Date in History 

  • 1973: Bobby Orr becomes the first player in NHL history to record 100 points in four-straight seasons.
  • 1990: Joe Sakic becomes the youngest player in NHL history to record 100 points when he scored a goal in a 3-2 loss to the Hartford Whalers.
  • 1994: The Chicago White Sox assigned former NBA (and Chicago Bulls) superstar Michael Jordan to their Class AA affiliate the Birmingham Barons.
  • 1997: Arizona beat Kentucky, 84-79 (OT), in the 59th NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship to secure the program’s first national title.
  • 2002: The University of Connecticut women’s basketball captured the 21st NCAA Championship – the Huskies beat Oklahoma, 82-70, and finished their season 39-0.
  • 2002: Andre Agassi won his 700th career match by beating Roger Federer in the Nasdaq-100 Open in Florida.

Daily Noontime: Monday, March 23rd, 2020

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By Matt Noonan | @NoontimeNation 

It’s Monday, which means its time for a brand new week. Are you ready?

As usual, we’re here to put a smile on your face and take some time away from news of the coronavirus (COVID-19), which is exactly what we will start doing … now!


Today’s Weather in Boston (and the Greater Boston Area): After a nice weekend with some sun and wind, it will be a bit cooler today – look for temperatures hovering between 34 and 38 degrees. It will be overcast for the majority of the day – maybe we’ll see the sun for a few minutes? – but then a wintry mix arrives later this afternoon, which will turn to rain for most of us this evening. 

Luckily, tomorrow will be warmer and include the sun, but there seems to be a lot of rain in the forecast this week, which means we should all just stay indoors (and be safe, of course!).


The Noontime Headlines for Monday, March 23rd, 2020 


In Case You Missed It: 

  • We started our first theme week here at Noontime Sports (and NoontimeSports.com) yesterday – we are producing content on Boston and New England sports teams from the past decade. And we began with our All-Decade Boston Bruins team.

On This Date in History 

  • 1948: Kansas topped Baylor in the 10th NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship to claim the program’s first-ever national title.
  • 1957: North Carolina beat Kansas, 54-53, in triple-overtime in the 19th NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship. Wilt Chamberlain, who played for Kansas, became the fourth player to be named the tournament’s most valuable player despite not being on the championship squad.
  • 1963: Loyola-Chicago beats Cincinnati, 60-58, in overtime in the 25th NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship, providing the Ramblers with their initial title in their first-ever finals appearance.
  • 1994: Wayne Gretzky sets the NHL record with 802 goals scored.

March Madness Will Not Include Fans Due To Coronavirus Concerns

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No fans will be allowed at this year’s NCAA March Madness Tournaments. (PHOTO COURTESY: dayseraph on Visual hunt / CC BY-NC-ND)

By Matt Noonan | @NoontimeNation 

This year’s NCAA D-I men’s and women’s basketball tournaments won’t look the way they have in the past because none of the upcoming contests will include fans.

Due to the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19), especially these past few days, the NCAA announced Wednesday afternoon that both tournaments would occur, but not include fans. Teams will play in empty arenas in front of teammates, coaches, essential staff and family members, according to NCAA president Mark Emmert

In a statement to the public, Emmert confirmed his decision to not allow fans to attend either tournament after consulting with public health officials. 

“Based on their advice and my discussions with the NCAA Board of Governors, I have made the decision to conduct our upcoming championship events, including the Division I men’s and women’s basketball tournaments, with only essential staff and limited family attendance,” said Emmert, via today’s release on NCAA.org.

The NCAA President would continue by adding, “While I understand how disappointing this is for all fans of our sports, my decision is based on the current understanding of how COVID-19 is progressing in the United States. This decision is in the best interest of public health, including that of coaches, administrators, fans and, most importantly, our student-athletes.”

Prior to the NCAA announcing no fans would be allowed to attend this year’s March Madness, the Ivy League canceled its conference tournaments on Tuesday morning, which were scheduled to take place this weekend at Harvard University.

Earlier today, it was announced (and confirmed) that the Golden State Warriors would play against the Brooklyn Nets on Thursday, March 12th with no fans in the stands.

This evening, the Big Ten Conference (B10) announced tomorrow’s men’s conference tournament would be limited to student-athletes, coaches, event staff, essential team, and conference members. Additionally, the conference will permit TV network partners, credentialed media, and immediate family members of the participating teams.

Jeff Goodman, who is a basketball analyst for Stadium, reported this evening there are discussions happening about possibly postponing or evening canceling the NCAA Tournament and Final Four.” 

As more information develops and becomes available, we will make sure to update this post and our site with new blog posts. 

Ivy League Cancels The 2020 Basketball Conference Tournaments

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Basketball Hoop. (PHOTO COURTESY: bobert1980 on Visual Hunt / CC BY-NC)

By NoontimeSports.com | @NoontimeNation

It was announced earlier today that the Ivy League would be canceling this weekend’s men’s and women’s basketball conference tournaments, which was going to be held at Harvard University.

The league announced that both Princeton University (women’s basketball) and Yale University (men’s basketball) would represent the Ancient Eight in the upcoming March Madness Tournaments, which are scheduled to commence next week. Both teams concluded their respective campaigns last weekend as regular-season champions.

As noted in this morning’s release, the decision to cancel this year’s basketball tournaments is due to the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19). The league’s decision was “made in accordance with the guidance of public health and medical professionals.” 

“We understand and share the disappointment with student-athletes, coaches and fans who will not be able to participate in these tournaments, “Ivy League Executive Director Robin Harris said in the release. “Regrettably, the information and recommendations presented to us from public health authorities and medical professionals have convinced us that this is the most prudent decision.”

Fans that purchased tickets to this year’s tournament will be refunded, but any ticketholders that have additional questions should contact the Harvard ticket office.

The league will permit its remaining winter teams to compete in upcoming contests “in accordance with institutional policies” while implementing a limit to the number of fans that can attend future games. The Ivy League also canceled out of season practices, along with any competitions theses teams may have scheduled.

Prior to this morning’s announcement, Harvard announced they would be shifting from in-person to virtual classrooms while asking students not to return to campus at the conclusion of the institution’s Spring Recess.  As noted in a letter to students, faculty, and staff, “Our goal is to have this transition complete by Monday, March 23, which is the first day of scheduled classes following Spring Recess.”

Manning On Facing Tufts: “Third Time’s a Charm, Right?”

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Maggie Meehan and the Williams College women’s basketball team will be competing Friday, March 13th in the NCAA “Sweet 16.” (PHOTO COURTESY: Williams College Athletics)

By NoontimeSports.com 

When the NCAA D-III Women’s Basketball Tournament pairings were released last Monday, the thought of Williams College facing Tufts University for the third time this season seemed like a possibility. But it wasn’t a given.

For the Ephs and Jumbos to meet in the “Sweet 16,” both teams needed to win their respective pods, which they did. Tufts beat SUNY Cortland and SUNY Poly while Williams topped Albright College and Ithaca College. And now, the two New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) squads are scheduled to tip-off this Friday, March 13th in Medford, Massachusetts.

When asked about competing against the Jumbos for a third time this season, Williams coach Pat Manning smiled and then said, “Here we go with our third time with Tufts. Hope the third time’s a charm, right?”

Perhaps the third time will be the charm for the Ephs, who have lost twice this winter to the Jumbos, including a six-point setback in the NESCAC semifinals last month, which provided Tufts an opportunity to contend for the conference title against Bowdoin College.

Prior to their meeting in the NESCAC Tournament, Tufts beat Williams on the final Saturday of the regular season by a score of 76-60. Cailin Harrington highlighted the win for the Jumbos with 17 points on five of ten shooting to go with nine rebounds, two assists, and one block while Williams’ Maggie Meehan tallied 17 points, as well, along with one rebound, one assist, and one steal.

Williams, which earned its first trip to the “big dance” in five seasons as an at-large bid, will be making its fifth appearance in the “Sweet 16” on Friday.