The big picture

College sports stare down a coronavirus-driven disaster in the fall

Wednesday was the worst day in college sports since March 12.

Jul 9, 2020 - Sports
Universities cut sports teams, as they struggle with coronavirus fallout

Thousands of student-athletes' careers have abruptly ended.

Jun 26, 2020 - Sports
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

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.

Kendall Baker, author of Sports
Nov 20, 2020 - Sports

Coronavirus cancellations give the Group of 5 a chance to shine

Photo: Michael Hickey/Getty Images

The pandemic eliminated most Power 5 vs. Group of 5 games this season, costing the smaller Group of 5 schools millions of dollars in game contracts.

Yes, but: Conference-only play, postponed start dates and canceled games have given those schools a chance to climb up the polls and make a name for themselves nationally — an opportunity that a handful have seized.

Kendall Baker, author of Sports
Nov 18, 2020 - Sports

Division I athletes reach 90% graduation rate

Courtesy: NCAA

College athletes continue to graduate at record rates and outperform non-athletes, according to the NCAA's latest Graduation Success Rate (GSR) report.

By the numbers: 90% of Division I athletes who enrolled in 2013 earned a degree within six years, up from 74% in 2002 — and an increase of 1% over last year's previous high.

Nov 17, 2020 - Sports

The NCAA eyes an Indianapolis bubble for March Madness

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.

Kendall Baker, author of Sports
Nov 2, 2020 - Sports

The third coronavirus wave means even more sports uncertainty

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

America's pro sports leagues sputtered back to life in 2020 with bubbles, comprehensive testing programs and a host of other changes that still seem unimaginable after the fact.

The state of play: The leagues succeeded because they have enormous wealth and were operating mostly in "salvage the season" mode — but now comes the hard part: Figuring out how to do it again — this time from an even worse financial position and amid a third coronavirus wave.

Kendall Baker, author of Sports
Oct 27, 2020 - Sports

Scoop: "Field of 68" network launches today

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Jeff Goodman and Rob Dauster, both long-time college basketball insiders, have joined forces with former players and fellow media members to launch a new college hoops podcast network called The Field of 68.

Coming up: The network will launch with a trio of national podcasts this week:

Oct 23, 2020 - Sports

Big Ten football is back

Photo: James Black/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The Big Ten football season kicks off tonight after months of a "will they, won't they" narrative.

The state of play: Each team will play eight regular season games, culminating in a ninth, cross-divisional matchup on Dec. 19 (i.e. the Big Ten Championship, but also No. 2 East vs. No. 2 West, etc.).

Kendall Baker, author of Sports
Oct 19, 2020 - Sports

The sports world has entered the era of limited fan attendance

Fans during Sunday's Steelers-Browns game in Pittsburgh. Photo: Joe Sargent/Getty Images

Following the No Sports Era this spring, we transitioned to the No Fans Era, with bubble tournaments and empty stadiums becoming a staple of the summer.

The state of play: We have now entered the Limited Fans Era, a transition that has gone somewhat unnoticed due to shifting attendance policies.

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