By Austin Ferguson
ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. — Following the cancellations of all but two Division I college basketball conference tournaments, Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) Commissioner Rich Ensor has told reporters that he is scheduled to make a conference call with other league presidents regarding the future of the MAAC tournament.
The first MAAC women’s contest of March 12 was meant to be a normal game. Fairfield and Siena’s women’s matchup turned into so much more.
During the second half of the quarterfinal game, MAAC commissioner Rich Ensor called over a group of reporters to make a statement.
“Can’t really predict where we’re at [with the tournament],” Ensor said. “But it’s certainly a possibility we could cancel.”
While Ensor spoke to reporters, including The Rider News’ Dylan Manfre, the Big East conference pulled Creighton and St. John’s basketball players off the court and canceled its tournament, leaving the MAAC to be the lone conference playing college basketball at around 1 p.m.
According to Ensor, he was scheduled to join a conference call with other league presidents at 2 p.m. to discuss the possibility of canceling the rest of the MAAC tournament.
“I’m getting some pressure from some presidents to try to cancel the tournament,” Ensor said.
According to MAAC Interim Director of New Media and Video Mathew Gonzalez, a press conference is scheduled for 2:30 p.m. regarding the status of the tournament.
As of 2:00 p.m. on March 12, the MAAC is joined by the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference as the only two conferences yet to cancel their basketball postseason tournaments.
At 2:00 p.m. on March 12, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy posted a video to social media recommending the cancellation of public gatherings of 250 or more people.
By the end of Fairfield and Siena’s women’s quarterfinal game, 11 games were completed in the MAAC tournament as it was still in its quarterfinal round.
Rider’s women’s basketball team played its quarterfinal match with Niagara on March 11 without restrictions on attendance. Should the tournament continue, the Broncs will play the winner of Quinnipiac and Manhattan’s contest at 2:30 p.m. on March 12.
On the men’s side, the Broncs are scheduled to play Niagara on March 12 at 7 p.m., barring cancellation of games or the tournament itself.
This is a developing story.