DURHAM, NC (GoDuke.com) – The Duke men's basketball program will forgo its remaining nonconference regular season basketball games for the 2020-21 season. The decision was made out of an abundance of caution due to the COVID-19 pandemic and to allow the Blue Devils' student-athletes time over the holidays to spend with their families.
Duke's game versus Charleston Southern that was originally scheduled for December 12 was postponed due to COVID protocols at CSU. That contest, along with a previously postponed game versus Elon, will not be rescheduled. Additionally, Duke's game versus Gardner-Webb, that had been rescheduled for December 19, has been canceled.
"This is the best decision we could make as a program, in making sure that we are doing the right thing for our players," said Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski. "This will also allow our team to have time over the holidays to safely enjoy with their families. These kids need to be with their families, at least for a little bit. So we will play the Notre Dame game on December 16, and then allow our team four or five days at home before returning here to prepare for the remainder of our ACC schedule – and hopefully get to play all of them. These kids go through so much, and we need to take care of them."
With strict protocols in place, including no fans or family members in attendance for games at Cameron Indoor Stadium, student-athletes on the Duke men's basketball team have had limited to no in-person contact with their immediate family since reporting to campus in August.
By canceling the remaining non-conference games, the Blue Devils now have the needed flexibility in the schedule to have student-athletes depart and return to campus in a manner that follows Duke University's campus protocols for travel.
Duke will return to action on Wednesday, December 16 for the ACC opener at Notre Dame. The game is set for 9 p.m. ET on ESPN.