Southern Utah Announces Basketball Seasons Will Begin Without Spectators
SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Southern Utah’s athletic department announced that fans will be unable to attend Thunderbird men’s and women’s basketball games to start the 2020-21 season because of the coronavirus pandemic.
SUU announced the decision on Thursday, November 12.
“This difficult decision will be enforced through at least December 31, 2020, and will be revisited at a later date for contests happening in 2021,” the university’s athletic department said.
The decision was made due to rising COVID-19 case numbers in the state of Utah and Southern Utah’s “commitment to the health and well-being of its student-athletes, coaches, staff, faculty, student population and the larger Cedar City community.”
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“This was an incredibly tough decision to make, and we will miss having our fans in the America First Event Center,” Southern Utah athletic director Debbie Corum said in a statement. “Ultimately, we felt it was vital to ensure we will be able to hold a basketball game safely without fans before we can add them into the equation. Our staff has been working so hard to keep the health and safety of all those involved at the forefront of everything we do, and will continue to do so with the hope that we can reopen the arena in January.”
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Four direct family members of coaches and players will be able to attend games.
Southern Utah’s men’s basketball team begins its season against Montana on Thursday, December 3.
The Thunderbirds’ women’s basketball team starts play against the Utah Utes on Wednesday, November 25.
Fans will be able to watch all of the Thunderbirds’ home games for men’s and women’s basketball on PlutoTV and www.WatchBigSky.com.
The games will also be broadcast on 590 AM.