Division II reduces bracket, field sizes for 2021 winter and spring championships

Changes come as DII’s budget faces challenges with COVID-19 testing, limited fan attendance

The Division II Administrative Committee on Monday approved a recommendation to reduce bracket and field sizes for the 2021 Division II winter and spring championships.

The reductions were made to alleviate expected budget shortfalls, specifically as the Division II  budget for the 2020-21 fiscal year faces challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The field and bracket size reductions of the 18 Division II 2021 winter and spring championships vary by sport, with 12 of them being reduced by 25%. The reductions, listed below, were initially recommended by each sport committee. The Division II Championships Committee and the Division II Planning and Finance Committee each approved the recommendations. The reductions that are more or less than 25% were made because of logistical or practical concerns with operating that sport’s championship.

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DI Council extends eligibility for winter sport student-athletes

Members also provide additional flexibility in championships selection, membership requirements

Winter sport student-athletes who compete during 2020-21 in Division I will receive both an additional season of competition and an additional year in which to complete it, the Division I Council decided. The same flexibility was provided to student-athletes after the spring season was canceled in 2020 and the fall season was seriously impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Council met by videoconference Tuesday and Wednesday.

“The pandemic will continue to impact winter sport seasons in ways we can’t predict. Council members opted to provide for winter sport student-athletes the same flexibility given spring and fall sports previously,” said Council chair M. Grace Calhoun, athletics director at Pennsylvania. “The actions today ensure the continuation of local decision-making in the best interest of each institution and its student-athletes.”

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NCAA Division I Council reportedly votes to grant additional year of eligibility to winter-sports athletes

Spencer Lee’s pathway to become a four-time NCAA champion could be cleared again, and the drive for five might be alive for Yianni Diakomihalis and Mekhi Lewis.

The NCAA’s Division I Council voted Tuesday in favor of granting an additional year of eligibility to winter sports athletes, college basketball analyst Jeff Goodman reported. Goodman tweeted that the decision could be brought back for reconsideration and won’t be official until the close of Wednesday’s meetings.

In August, the NCAA granted blanket waivers to athletes participating in fall sports, enabling them to compete this season without exhausting a year of eligibility. The NCAA also ruled then that schools would be allowed a temporary expansion of scholarship limits to accommodate seniors who opt to return for an additional season. Continue reading at trackwrestling.com

NCAA President Mark Emmert’s statement on limiting attendance at NCAA events

The NCAA continues to assess the impact of COVID-19 in consultation with public health officials and our COVID-19 advisory panel. 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. 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. We recognize the opportunity to compete in an NCAA national championship is an experience of a lifetime for the students and their families. Today, we will move forward and conduct championships consistent with the current information and will continue to monitor and make adjustments as needed.

-NCAA President Mark Emmert

NCAA announces at-large selections for Division I wrestling championships

Gophers receive four at-large bids

INDIANAPOLIS — The NCAA announced the 48 at-large selections for the 2020 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships in Minneapolis.

The wrestlers, listed in alphabetical order by weight class, join the 282 student-athletes that qualified automatically through their conference tournament finishes last weekend.  The at-large selections were made by the NCAA Division I Wrestling Committee using the following selection criteria: head-to-head competition, quality wins, results against common opponents, winning percentage, rating percentage index, coaches ranking and conference tournament finish.

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