The Basketball Tournament will be held at a single location and feature 24 teams as a result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
The annual summer tournament, which features teams playing for a $2 million, winner-take-all prize, will now take place during a period of 10 days. All players and participants will be tested for COVID-19 and quarantined in the days leading up to the event.
It’s a situation the league has been strategizing about for months.
"After reviewing all available science and data, working with experts, and receiving support from our partners, we’ve devised a plan we are confident protects the health and safety of our participants and staff to the greatest extent possible," TBT founder and CEO Jon Mugar said in a statement. "At the forefront is our single-elimination format, ability to test and quarantine the field and keep teams separate at all times. We look forward to hosting an incredible group of teams and crowning a champion this summer."
Today’s press release does not name a host city or a date for the event. A source has indicated to The Dispatch that Wichita, Kansas, is being discussed as a site alongside a city in West Virginia and another in Florida.
Columbus was one of nine cities scheduled to host games in this year’s event. Refunds for the games, which were to be played at Ohio State, will be issued.
No mention is made in the press release of fans being on hand to watch the games.
As part of TBT’s testing plan, a positive COVID-19 test will result in the removal of the player and his team from the event. Teams will be kept separate at all times in quarantine, and players will be screened daily for symptoms. They will also undergo an exit screening by local health officials.
Last year’s 64-team TBT was won by Carmen’s Crew, a team primarily composed of Ohio State alumni.