UCLA calls off game vs. Alabama State because of COVID-19 an hour before scheduled tip

Hours after announcing that head coach Mick Cronin would be sidelined, UCLA called off its home men's basketball game against Alabama St. — which was scheduled for Wednesday night — citing COVID-19 protocols.

The announcement arrived less than an hour before the scheduled 8 p.m. PT tipoff.

UPDATE: UCLA's home game against Alabama State on Wednesday, Dec. 15 will not be played as scheduled due to COVID-19 protocols. pic.twitter.com/nrbAhyyxxw

— UCLA Men’s Basketball (@UCLAMBB) December 16, 2021

The program didn't immediately provide further details about the situation or whether the game will be rescheduled. UCLA is slated to face North Carolina on Saturday in Las Vegas. 

Around five hours before the scheduled tip, UCLA announced that Cronin wouldn't be available, also citing COVID-19 protocols. The situation arrives as teams and leagues across the country grapple with a dramatic spike in COVID-19 cases. 

Yahoo Sports' Vincent Goodwill reported on Wednesday that the NBA is exploring modifying its COVID-19 protocols amid a spate of positive cases across the league. Giannis Antetokounmpo and James Harden are among the stars sidelined in health and safety protocols. The Chicago Bulls placed 10 players in COVID-19 protocols, forcing the league to postpone two of their games this week. 

The NFL recorded a single-day record 37 positive cases among players on Monday while watching the list continue to grow throughout the week. So far, the NFL has not postponed any games. NFL chief medical officer Dr. Allen Sills confirmed on Wednesday that the rapidly spreading Omicron variant has infected multiple teams. 

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