NU logo

The Niagara University men's basketball team is not currently able to practice thanks to a coronavirus outbreak at the school.

NU had 47 positive tests and 160 individuals quarantining due to contact with those who tested positive, according to an email Friday from president James. J. Maher to students, faculty and staff that was shared with GNN Sports.

Men's hoops coach Greg Paulus said his team is not practicing during a preseason Zoom call with reporters held by the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference on Monday. When will the Purple Eagles return to the court? "We're still working through that," Paulus said.

"First and foremost is the safety of campus, the people on campus," Paulus said. "And obviously our team and student-athletes are a part of that. We have terrific leadership on campus. With what's going on here, we know they're going to do the best that they can. We're a part of the student body. We're going to do our best to continue to follow those protocols and continue to do our part."

Niagara is the fifth MAAC men's basketball program to miss time recently due to an outbreak. Canisius, Marist, Rider and Monmouth have also been sidelined.

Canisius just completed its seventh practice of the season on Saturday, head coach Reggie Witherspoon said during Monday's conference call.

Friday, the MAAC announced it was reformatting its basketball schedule to better accommodate the pandemic. Teams will play Friday-Saturday series with opponents in a single location over a single weekend, rather than the typical home-and-home that is used throughout college basketball.

•••

In other college news, the Atlantic Hockey Association, of which Niagara is a member, is down team.

The Rochester Institute of Technology is canceling its sports this winter, the school announced Monday. RIT is a member of the NCAA Division III Liberty League in all sports except men's and women's ice hockey, which play D-1 in the AHA and College Hockey America, respectively.

The Liberty League announced it was canceling all of its winter sports, and RIT decided to follow suit across the board.

"Campus leadership has been meeting regularly to discuss the prospect of safely conducting winter sports competitions under the backdrop of extensive NCAA, New York State, Department of Health and university guidelines aimed at keeping our community safe," RIT Executive Director of Athletics Lou Spiotti Jr. said in a statement. "In spite of our efforts, the virus continues to spread throughout the region and we could not justify a season of competition for any of our teams."

The men's hockey Tigers aren't going quietly. Jake Hamacher, a senior, tweeted a statement on behalf of the team, which "will be fighting this decision."

Trending Video

Recommended for you