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Eight player minimum could be college basketball's reality

Bob Marlin 2020.jpg
Posted at 10:39 PM, Sep 30, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-01 00:32:28-04

Louisiana men's basketball coach Bob Marlin held back a wry smile Tuesday while talking about a potential 8-player minimum that could govern whether or not teams play games or cancel as conferences iron out coronavirus protocols.

"When we talked about that very number, 8, it was discussed yesterday," said Marlin. "I texted Dr. Maggard while we were on the Zoom and said 'shoot, that should help us because we did that quite often last year.'"

Decimated by injuries, Louisiana played extremely shorthanded on more than one occasion in 2019. In 2020 that seems inevitable with the coronavirus likely to force players to sit and teams to cancel, something we've seen frequently during football. Since the de facto week one September 12th, at least one SBC football game has been canceled each week.

The Cajuns basketball team has been practicing on a limited basis. The team can begin the standard in-season routine October 14th. Marlin said Wednesday the team has had to pause practice because of positive tests, but didn't expand on how many players or how many days were affected.

Marlin said the Sun Belt plans to test players multiple times a week, but suggested the league's protocols remain in flux two months out from the season tip-off. Paraphrasing athletic director Dr. Bryan Maggard, Marlin said this year will be "clunky."

"There are going to be times you just have to hit the reset button. But that's part of coaching," he said. "Almost every campus in the country has had issues, ours has been better than most. We're going to continue to work, be safe and try to do the right things and give our self the best position we can to try getting in as many games we can, knowing there may be a game that's canceled."

The Sun Belt plans to release its schedule Thursday.

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