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Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The NCAA announced Monday that it will consolidate March Madness to a single city in 2021, likely Indianapolis.

Why it matters: The NCAA lost $375 million when it canceled March Madness this past spring, and with COVID-19 surging heading into the winter, utilizing a bubble could be the only way to successfully complete the event.

The state of play: The 13 cities originally slated to host preliminary round games will have to wait until 2022 or beyond to get another chance.

  • The cities missing out include Brooklyn; Dallas; Detroit; Denver; San Jose, California; Minneapolis; Memphis, Tennessee; Raleigh, North Carolina; Lexington, Kentucky; Wichita, Kansas; Dayton, Ohio; Boise, Idaho; Providence, Rhode Island.
  • Indianapolis was supposed to host the Final Four. Now, it could host the entire 68-team tournament.

Possible locations: Assuming each arena can handle four games per day (noon, 3pm, 6pm, 9pm), then even during the packed first round (16 games per day) they shouldn't need more than four arenas. Some options that could work:

  • Lucas Oil Stadium, home of the NFL's Colts
  • Hinkle Fieldhouse, Butler University
  • Indiana Farmers Coliseum, IUPUI
  • IUPUI Gymnasium, IUPUI

Worth noting: The NBA season will be in full swing, so the Pacers' home court, Bankers Life Fieldhouse, isn't an option. If more than four arenas are needed, smaller gyms — or ones outside the city center — could be in play.

The bottom line: The regular season could get thrown into disarray long before March arrives. But if it's completed as scheduled, a bubble awaits the 68 teams ready to go dancing.

What to watch: No word yet on the women's tournament. Their Final Four was scheduled to be held in San Antonio.

Go deeper

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
7 hours ago - Technology

TikTok gets more time (again)

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The White House is again giving TikTok's Chinese parent company more to satisfy national security concerns, rather than initiating legal action, a source familiar with the situation tells Axios.

The state of play: China's ByteDance had until Friday to resolve issues raised by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the U.S. (CFIUS), which is chaired by Treasury secretary Steve Mnuchin. This was the company's third deadline, with CFIUS having provided two earlier extensions.

Federal judge orders Trump administration to restore DACA

DACA recipients and their supporters rally outside the U.S. Supreme Court on June 18. Photo: Drew Angerer via Getty

A federal judge on Friday ordered the Trump administration to fully restore the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, giving undocumented immigrants who arrived in the U.S. as children a chance to petition for protection from deportation.

Why it matters: DACA was implemented under former President Obama, but President Trump has sought to undo the program since taking office. Friday’s ruling will require Department of Homeland Security officers to begin accepting applications starting Monday and guarantee that work permits are valid for two years.

Updated 9 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Politics: Fauci says he accepted Biden's offer to be chief medical adviser "on the spot" — The recovery needs rocket fuel.
  2. Health: CDC: It's time for "universal face mask use" — Death rates rising across the country — Study: Increased testing can reduce transmission.
  3. Economy: U.S. economy adds 245,000 jobs in November as recovery slows — America's hidden depression: K-shaped recovery threatens Biden administration.
  4. Cities: Bay Area counties to enact stay-at-home order ahead of state mandate
  5. Vaccine: What vaccine trials still need to do.
  6. World: UN warns "2021 is literally going to be catastrophic"
  7. 🎧 Podcast: Former FDA chief Rob Califf on the vaccine approval process.