Google Blog: Stay tournament-ready with Google

Google Blog: Stay tournament-ready with Google. “We teamed up with the NCAA and Turner Sports to bring the action of both the men and women’s Tournaments to you. Game-related searches including those for specific teams, match-ups or the tournament will trigger either in-game or postgame video highlights, all from the Google Search page. From unbelievable blocks to clutch steals to buzzer beaters, you’ll be able to relive the best moments from every game.”

March Madness 2021: Start time, schedule, how to watch and what you need to know (CNET)

CNET: March Madness 2021: Start time, schedule, how to watch and what you need to know. “The pandemic caused last year’s NCAA tournament to be canceled but college basketball’s premier event has returned for 2021, albeit with a few changes to account for COVID-19. Typically the early rounds are scattered across the country in different ‘regions,’ but this year the 67 men’s games will all take place in Indiana with the bulk of the action happening in Indianapolis.”

2021 NCAA tournament will allow limited fans: ‘This is a good but bold move’ (IndyStar)

IndyStar: 2021 NCAA tournament will allow limited fans: ‘This is a good but bold move’. “Daniel McQuiston’s days are spent in academics, researching marketing and sports and trends, sizing up what works and what doesn’t. When the announcement came across Friday the NCAA would allow limited fan attendance for its men’s tournament, he said to himself: ‘I like it.’”

Hickory Daily Record: Heat to use COVID-19-sniffing dogs to screen fans at games

Hickory Daily Record: Heat to use COVID-19-sniffing dogs to screen fans at games. “The Miami Heat are bringing back some fans, with help from some dogs. The Heat will use coronavirus-sniffing dogs at AmericanAirlines Arena to screen fans who want to attend their games. They’ve been working on the plan for months, and the highly trained dogs have been in place for some games this season where the team has allowed a handful of guests — mostly friends and family of players and staff.”

CBS News: Some Colleges Axing “Secondary Sports” Like Gymnastics And Tennis As Pandemic Continues

CBS News: Some Colleges Axing “Secondary Sports” Like Gymnastics And Tennis As Pandemic Continues. “American universities have been rocked by the coronavirus pandemic. Some have shut their campuses down completely. But schools that play big-time sports have gone to remarkable lengths to save their football and basketball seasons…. They do it, of course, to keep the TV money coming in from football and basketball. But at the same time, dozens of universities have been eliminating smaller ‘secondary’ sports like gymnastics and tennis and swimming.”

Yahoo: As college basketball implodes, the sport needs to pivot to save season — ‘It’s going to be a disaster’

Yahoo: As college basketball implodes, the sport needs to pivot to save season — ‘It’s going to be a disaster’. “A bleak spree of breaking news the past 72 hours leaves the sport at a crossroads. College basketball is crumbling in front of us because of greed, competing agendas and a lack of leadership. By foolishly deciding to play non-conference games, the sport is now risking what it really needs in the long term – a way to play conference games and, most importantly, play the NCAA tournament.”

Wall Street Journal: A College Basketball Tournament Needed a Safe Home. It Moved to a Covid Hot Spot.

Wall Street Journal: A College Basketball Tournament Needed a Safe Home. It Moved to a Covid Hot Spot.. “Some of the best teams in college basketball were supposed to be celebrating Thanksgiving in the Bahamas. But when the pandemic canceled a tournament called the Battle 4 Atlantis, the schools had to change their plans. They ripped up their tickets to paradise and booked trips to South Dakota. The relocated teams were seeking a safer place to play. They happened to pick a part of the country with one of the worst Covid-19 outbreaks anywhere in the world.”

Washington Post: A farewell to the NBA bubble after three grueling and exhilarating months

Washington Post: A farewell to the NBA bubble after three grueling and exhilarating months. “The bubble opened with an overwhelming rush of media interest that mostly consisted of morbid curiosity and rubbernecking. I did countless interviews about my seven-day quarantine inside a hotel room, and everyone asked about what would happen if someone got sick or died. Once it became clear that the NBA’s stringent health protocols were working, the ambulance chasers moved on. Now, physical and mental exhaustion reign, and it has become clear that the bubble was meant for die-hards.”

ESPN: Inside the NBA bubble’s unofficial wine club

ESPN: Inside the NBA bubble’s unofficial wine club. “IN THE DAYS leading up to the NBA’s Florida reboot, New Orleans Pelicans guard JJ Redick contemplated what provisions to bring for a stay in the Orlando bubble that would last at least five weeks. He initially focused only on the necessities and packed light. Then on July 8, once he arrived with the Pelicans at their appointed hotel, the Yacht Club, Redick gauged his room and hotel amenities. One of his first efforts was to examine the wine list.”

ESPN: Brooklyn Nets’ Kyrie Irving commits $1.5M to help pay WNBA players who opted out

ESPN: Brooklyn Nets’ Kyrie Irving commits $1.5M to help pay WNBA players who opted out. “Kyrie Irving is helping to make sure WNBA players can sit out the season and not stress about a paycheck. The Brooklyn Nets star is committing $1.5 million to supplement the income of players who choose not to play this season, whether because of coronavirus concerns or social justice reasons.”

CNN: Covering the weirdest basketball season ever from inside the NBA bubble

CNN: Covering the weirdest basketball season ever from inside the NBA bubble. “Shortly before Joe Vardon started covering last year’s NBA playoffs, the sports journalist took his family to Walt Disney World. Now, more than a year later, Vardon is back in Orlando, Florida — staying at the same Disney (DIS) hotel, in fact — but it’s a whole new world. Everyone is wearing masks. There are temperature checks at the entrances. And oh yes, there’s a deadly pandemic tearing across Florida, one of the country’s coronavirus hotspots.”