This year's NCAA men's basketball tournament could look a lot different from previous ones as a result of the nationwide coronavirus outbreak.
The uncertainty was evident Tuesday as Jim Nantz and other CBS/Turner Sports broadcasters discussed the situation on a conference call with reporters.
“Like everyone else, we have no idea where this is going over the next three or four weeks and we’ll adapt to whatever the NCAA decides to do with the tournament,” Nantz said.
Despite concerns about the virus, Nantz expressed optimism that the story lines and buzzer-beaters the NCAA tournament always provides would be a welcome distraction for viewers.
“This comes at a time where the country really needs more than ever a chance to have something that brings some joy/fun into their lives, more of an escapism, if you will."
So far, the NCAA and the networks are proceeding as scheduled, but Nantz did at least acknowledge the possibility of some games being played without spectators present -- as has been done at sporting events around the world.
"The hardest thing to get your mind around is calling a game with so much at stake with no crowd, no excitement in the building," he said. "What would that feel like? What can you think of that you’ve done that ever would be comparable to that?"