Update: The NCAA announced Thursday it has canceled -- not postponed -- all NCAA championship events through the remainder of the academic year.
We're all doing our best to put sports in the appropriate box it belongs in right now, but it's really important for a zillion different reasons that the NCAA Tournament get played in whatever form it can, at whatever time it can.
Aside from the paychecks and tips lost due to hundreds of thousands of travelers staying home, the NCAA expected to earn more than eight hundred million dollars from this year's tournament alone.
That money doesn't sit in the NCAA offices in Indianapolis. Most is passed along to the schools, which funds scholarships and jobs that thousands and thousands of families depend on. The NCAA has an insurance policy, but that and its reserves in the bank are not enough to cover an $827 million shortfall.
For that reason, as I'm writing this on Thursday afternoon, the NCAA Tournament is the last major event on the American sporting calendar not to be officially canceled or postponed. It was just 18 hours ago that the NBA suspended its ongoing regular season; it feels like that happened last week.
Duke AD Kevin White has suspended all Blue Devils teams from competition until further notice; White chairs the NCAA selection committee, and Duke is, well, Duke -- the NCAA can't credibly run a national championship tournament without the Blue Devils.
But what if they didn't have to?
An idea percolating social media on Thursday is to hold Selection Sunday as scheduled, and then push the tournament back to whenever it's safe to play basketball again.
This is all very much in the "social media spitballing" phase. Nothing even close to official.
Yet the NCAA should do everything in its power to hold the tournament for a million reasons and one. It would be the most celebrated NCAA tournament of all time, no matter what form -- or month -- it happened in.