Eager for March Madness? You’ll have to wait one day longer this year


In this March 16, 2020, file photo, official March Madness 2020 tournament basketballs are displayed in a storeroom at the CHI Health Center Arena, in Omaha, Neb.

COLUMBUS (WCMH) — The NCAA is delaying this year’s outbreak of March Madness.

The first two days of the NCAA men’s basketball tournament have traditionally taken place on a Thursday and Friday, with 16 games a day across the country jammed into 12-hour blocks. But this year, with the entire tournament already taking place in one state because of COVID-19, the NCAA is making one other change, pushing the start back a day.

The NCAA released its tournament schedule Wednesday, and instead of it starting on a Thursday, it will begin in earnest with 16 first-round games on Friday, March 19. The first round will conclude on Saturday, March 20, with second-round games starting on Sunday, March 21 and concluding on Monday, March 21.

The first two rounds will be preceded by the First Four on Thursday, March 18.

The changes continue into the second weekend, with Sweet 16 games on Saturday, March 27 and Sunday, March 28, and Elite Eight games on Monday, March 29 and Tuesday, March 30.

The Final Four will take place on its usual Saturday — April 3 — with the championship game on Monday, April 5.

The entire tournament will take place in Indiana, primarily at facilities in Indianapolis.

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