The big picture

The latest on national legislation to pay student athletes

The NCAA is fearful that state-by-state action will lead to competitive unbalance and chaos.

Jun 19, 2020 - Sports
The rise of student-athlete activism

They're driving the national conversation in ways their predecessors could only dream about.

Jun 10, 2020 - Sports
The NCAA's "predator pipeline"

Nowhere in its 440-page rule book does it cite penalties for sexual violence.

Jan 23, 2020 - Sports
The NCAA's "Decade of Realignment," revisited

In 2010, TV money was exploding, and universities were suddenly willing to abandon traditions in the name of revenue.

Jul 29, 2019 - Sports

All NCAA stories

Feb 19, 2021 - Sports

NCAA to allow limited fans at basketball tournaments

A person sanitizing seats at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia, in January 2021. Photo: Patrick Smith/Getty Images

The NCAA announced Friday it will allow a limited number of fans to attend this year's men’s basketball championship in Indiana and some rounds of the women’s tournament in Texas.

Details: The NCAA said it would permit up to 25% capacity at all men’s tournament venues and 17% capacity at all women’s tournament venues from the Sweet 16 through the Final Four.

Feb 1, 2021 - Sports

Most college football concussions happen during practices, not games

Photo: Ned Dishman/Getty Images

A majority of concussions in college football occur during practice, not games, according to a study published Monday in JAMA Neurology.

Why it matters: Most rule changes regarding safety come at the game level, but focusing on revisions to training activities "could lead to a substantial reduction in overall concussion incidence," the study asserted.

Kendall Baker, author of Sports
Jan 26, 2021 - Sports

The pandemic has cost the NCAA $600 million

Data: NCAA; Chart: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

The pandemic fueled a roughly $600 million plunge in NCAA revenue this past fiscal year (Aug. 31, 2019–Aug. 31, 2020), according to financial statements.

By the numbers: In 2019, the NCAA generated $1.12 billion, mostly from media payments from its men's basketball tournament.

Kendall Baker, author of Sports
Jan 5, 2021 - Sports

What to know about the NCAA's March Madness bubble

Photo: Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

It's official: The 2021 NCAA men's basketball tournament will be held entirely in Indiana from late March to early April.

Why it matters: In terms of sheer size, the 68-team, 67-game hoops bonanza will be unlike anything we've seen during sports' pandemic era.

Kendall Baker, author of Sports
Dec 24, 2020 - Sports

Special report: The year in sports

The Milwaukee Bucks boycott their NBA playoff game to protest the shooting of Jacob Blake in Kenosha, Wisconsin, on Aug. 26. Photo: Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

It's been a year for sports unlike any other, and unlike we'll (hopefully) ever see again.

The big picture: While the outlook for sports during a pandemic looked grim at the outset, leagues got creative and found solutions. Fans adapted. Bubbles formed. Empty stadiums were filled with posterboards, stuffed animals and cardboard cutouts. Players adapted to a new world of isolation and cheerless games.

Dec 16, 2020 - Sports

Supreme Court to hear cases on NCAA athlete compensation

Tip-off between the Florida Gulf Coast Eagles and the North Carolina Tar Heels during the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament in 2016. Photo: Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

The Supreme Court on Wednesday agreed to hear the NCAA's appeal of lower court rulings that found the association violated antitrust laws by placing limits on education-related compensation for athletes.

Why it matters: The rulings expanded the range of education-related benefits student-athletes could receive. The NCAA claims this "effectively created a pay-for-play system for all student-athletes, allowing them to be paid both 'unlimited' amounts for participating in 'internships'" and an additional $5,600 or more per year of eligibility.

Nov 28, 2020 - Sports

Vanderbilt's Sarah Fuller becomes first woman to play in Power 5 football game

Sarah Fuller #32 of the Vanderbilt Commodores walks on the field prior to a game against the Mizzou Tigers at Memorial Stadium on November 28. Handout / Getty Images

Vanderbilt University's Sarah Fuller became the first woman to play in a Power 5 conference football game on Saturday when she kicked off to open the second half in her team's game against the University of Missouri.

The big picture: Vanderbilt recently recruited Fuller — who plays goaltender on the school's women's soccer team — as a kicker after some of the school's players had to quarantine due to COVID-19 contact tracing, according to the school.

Nov 25, 2020 - Sports

Alabama football coach Nick Saban tests positive for coronavirus

Photo: Kent Gidley/Collegiate Images/Getty Images

The University of Alabama's football team said Wednesday that its coach Nick Saban has tested positive for the coronavirus.

Why it matters: The 69-year-old legendary coach will miss the annual Iron Bowl on Saturday, where No. 1 ranked Alabama will take on No. 22 ranked rival Auburn. Saban, who registered a false positive COVID-19 test in October, is experiencing mild symptoms and plans to self-isolate at home.

Go deeper: Coronavirus cancellations give the Group of 5 teams a chance to shine

Kendall Baker, author of Sports
Nov 25, 2020 - Sports

College basketball is back

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

A new season of college basketball begins Wednesday, and the goal is clear: March Madness must be played.

Why it matters: On March 12, 2020, the lights went out on college basketball, depriving teams like Baylor (who won our tournament simulation), Dayton, San Diego State and Florida State of perhaps their best chance to win a national championship.

Kendall Baker, author of Sports
Nov 23, 2020 - Sports

Coronavirus precautions leave college basketball schedule in flux

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

With the college basketball season slated to begin on Wednesday, 35 men's teams are currently in "pause" and quarantining, per Stadium's Jeff Goodman.

Details: Schedules are in constant flux as schools prepare to fly across the country. Take Illinois State, which was supposed to be in Lincoln, Nebraska, on Wednesday, but will now be in Columbus, Ohio.

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