Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise
Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise

Why is Big Ten college basketball being played on Christmas?

Jonathan Davis (right) and the Wisconsin Badgers and Trey McGowens of the Nebraska Cornhuskers will both be in action on Christmas.
Jonathan Davis (right) and the Wisconsin Badgers and Trey McGowens of the Nebraska Cornhuskers will both be in action on Christmas.
Image: Getty Images

Sports on Christmas has a long history. Today, five NBA games will be played, while the Vikings and Saints will meet on the football field. Paid professionals working on America’s most celebrated holiday isn’t anything out of the norm.

But something about college basketball being played on Christmas, of all years, feels not only wrong but criminal.

Today’s slate features:

Wisconsin vs. Michigan State.

Michigan vs. Nebraska.

Iowa vs. Minnesota.

The conference that willingly chose to be the face of everything that’s wrong with playing sports in a pandemic without a plan, has decided that making these six teams play conference games is exactly what Jesus wanted for his birthday.

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And yes, I know that Buffalo and Marshall are playing in the Cramton Bowl today, but college football sold its soul to the devil a long time ago.

Below is a list of factual things that have happened in the last few weeks in college basketball that prove why the season needs to be paused, at most, or an actual plan needs to be put into action, at least, since the sport seems to be fixated on playing during a global pandemic.

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In October, Deadspin asked if the NCAA had a plan to play basketball during these times. The answer always has, and still continues to be, no.

Oh, and one more thing.

A conference that hasn’t won a national championship since 2000 is the very last one that anybody wants to see play on Christmas.

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Big Ten Commissioner Kevin Warren definitely woke up to a lump of coal this morning.

Saginaw Native. Morehouse Man. Syracuse (Newhouse) Alum. 2019 NABJ Award Winner. 2016 PABJ Journalist of the Year. I only eat my wings lemon-peppered. And I like brown liquor & brown women.

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