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TBT announces new format amid pandemic

It’s going to happen this summer.

NCAA Basketball: Northwestern at Illinois Mike Granse-USA TODAY Sports

We have very little to get excited about these days with so much in flux.

But the one thing we were hoping would still happen this summer — The Basketball Tournament — will still happen.

In a news release Wednesday morning, TBT announced that the 2020 edition will feature just 24 teams playing a tournament over 10 days at one location.

Illinois’ alumni team House of ‘Paign hasn’t been officially announced as a member of the field, but all signs point toward the former Illini being included.

The release said all players and staff will be tested for COVID-19 and quarantined in the days leading up to the games.

In a statement, TBT founder and CEO Jon Mugar said: “After reviewing all available science and data, working with experts, and receiving support from our partners, we’ve devised a plan we are confident protects the health and safety of our participants and staff to the greatest extent possible. At the forefront is our single-elimination format, ability to test and quarantine the field and keep teams separate at all times. We look forward to hosting an incredible group of teams and crowning a champion this summer.”

TBT said more than 115 teams have applied so far for the tournament, which includes fellow alumni teams like Carmen’s Crew (OSU), Boeheim’s Army (Syracuse) and Purdue’s team.