Geno Auriemma: NCAA Should Grant Extra Eligibility After Canceling Tournaments

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistMarch 13, 2020

HARTFORD, CONNECTICUT - JANUARY 27: Head coach Geno Auriemma of the UConn Huskies looks on during USA Women's National Team Winter Tour 2020 game between the United States and the UConn Huskies at The XL Center on January 27, 2020 in Hartford, Connecticut.  (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

Connecticut Huskies women's basketball coach Geno Auriemma would like to see the NCAA grant seniors in all winter and spring sports an additional year of eligibility.

Appearing on SportsCenter, Auriemma cited the "unprecedented" nature of championships being canceled as a result of the coronavirus pandemic as the reasoning behind his argument that student-athletes should receive an extra year of eligibility:

SportsCenter @SportsCenter

Geno Auriemma is in support of offering the seniors of spring sports an extra year of eligibility. “My feeling is this: It’s an unprecedented event so you have to take unprecedented measures." https://t.co/FBNeHaOubw

The NCAA announced Thursday that it was canceling all remaining winter and spring championship events, including the men's and women's basketball tournaments. 

As a result of the decision, senior student-athletes won't have the opportunity to compete for a national title this season. One prominent example is Oregon women's basketball star Sabrina Ionescu, who opted to forego the WNBA draft last year to compete for a championship as a senior.       

espnW @espnW

An unexpected ending to an unbelievable career. Thank you, @Sabrina_i20 ♥️ https://t.co/ammG9y40aR

Ionescu led Oregon to a 31-2 record and the Pac-12 regular-season and tournament titles this season before the NCAA's decision. 

The coronavirus has had a profound impact on the sports world. The NBA and NHL have suspended their seasons due to the ongoing pandemic. Major League Baseball has canceled all remaining spring training games and will start the regular season at least two weeks late.