Games Might Be Postponed

The NCAA is considering postponing games for a few days in the men's and women's basketball tournaments and other national championships if war with Iraq begins this week.

President Myles Brand stated Monday that the association is looking into arena and hotel availability in case a decision to postpone is made.

"We don't know when it will start, and we have to be respectful of our men and women in uniform,'' Brand said, following an NCAA town hall meeting on sportsmanship.

"On the other hand, I think we have to be very careful not to let Saddam Hussein control our lives. We have to balance those,'' he said.

Brand said that the most important concern would be the safety of the athletes and fans.

There has been no determination about network television changes concerning the tournament. CBS holds the rights to the mens tournament, but may move games to other Viacom-owned stations such as TNN and MTV. It was also reported that ESPN has also been named a player in another possible contingency plan

Brand said the NCAA has been in contact with the Homeland Security Department. He declined to give details, saying they would be announced as events take place.

ESPN and ESPN2 hold the rights to the womens tournament and there are no planned television changes.

"We're doing a lot of planning, but we don't know what direction it will go,'' Brand said.

President Bush announced a 48-hour deadline on Monday night, which would put the first stages of conflict hours before the first tip-off on Thursday.

The last time the NCAA postponed all sporting events was in response to Sept. 11.

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