Remainder of 2020 Big Ten men's basketball tournament canceled amid coronavirus concerns

Matthew Glenesk
Indianapolis Star

The remainder of the Big Ten men's basketball tournament has been canceled.

The conference released a statement moments after Rutgers and Michigan players were sent back to the locker rooms after taking the Bankers Life Fieldhouse court for warmups of Thursday's scheduled noon tipoff.

"The Big Ten Conference will use this time to work with the appropriate medical experts and institutional leadership to determine next steps for moving forward in regard to the COVID-19 pandemic," a statement from the conference read.

"The main priority of the Big Ten Conference continues to be the health, safety and wellness of our student-athletes, coaches, administrators, fans and media as we continue to monitor all developing and relevant information on the COVID-19 virus."

The SEC and American Athletic Conference also canceled the remainder of their conference tournaments on Thursday. The Ivy League was the first Division I conference to scupper its conference tournament on Tuesday.

Wednesday's games were played with fans in the stands, but it was later decided that all subsequent games would be played behind closed doors with no fans. But that changed as the NBA (Wednesday night) and Major League Soccer (Thursday morning) suspended their seasons.

The Big Ten men's and women's tournaments were expected to generate a combined $15 million for the city. The women's tournament was held as planned March 6-8.

This story will be updated.