The NCAA announced on Tuesday that the 2020-21 men’s and women’s basketball season start date was moved back to Nov. 25. Louisville men’s head coach Chris Mack joined the media on Wednesday to answer questions about the upcoming season.
“We’re awfully excited,” said Mack, whose team’s 2019-20 season was cut short due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The NCAA will allow programs to begin practice on Oct. 14 and teams are allowed to play up to 25 games this season, with a minimum of 13 required for championship selection.
In regards to the non-conference schedule, there remains plenty of questions as to how that will look for Louisville. Mack said, “chances have diminished,” that they will be making the trip to Las Vegas for the MGM Grand Main Event. Although, he did not rule it out. The tournament was originally scheduled for Nov. 20-22. The NCAA is allowing each program to play up to 3 games in a multi-team event.
Coach did say that the ACC and Big Ten have made it a priority to still hold their annual non-conference challenge. “That will be played unless something unforeseen happens,” said Mack.
As far as potential non-conference opponents, we will likely have to wait for a schedule announcement. “We’ve been talking to several teams geographically,” said Mack.
Mack said that he spoke to Cincinnati head coach John Brannen on Thursday morning about their matchup that was originally scheduled for Nov. 13 at Fifth Third Arena. He expressed some doubt as to whether or not the two teams would play this season.
When asked about a bubble, Mack said that there have been plenty of talks about both an ACC and a non-conference bubble. “I’m sure there will be some conferences that try to attempt that,” said Mack. “There’s been a lot of talk, but to say anything has been concrete … I don’t think so at this point.”