Duke men’s basketball's upcoming game against Cleveland State has been canceled, per an announcement by Cleveland State’s athletic department Wednesday morning.
Duke and Cleveland State were scheduled to meet Saturday at Cameron Indoor Stadium in Duke’s last nonconference matchup of the season. Due to positive COVID-19 cases within Cleveland State’s program, the Vikings have canceled their next two games.
"Throughout the pandemic we have prioritized the health and safety of our student-athletes, coaches and staff while training and competing,” said Cleveland State Athletic Director Scott Garrett in Wednesday’s release. “Coach Gates and the team have been extremely diligent in adhering to our protocols as well as deploying other proactive risk mitigation strategies. After consultation with our training staff and the Cleveland Clinic Sports Health Center, we are pausing team activity and will reassess in 10 days. While we are disappointed, it is clear that this is the responsible course of action."
Duke announced Wednesday morning that the program is searching for a replacement opponent for Saturday. Even with the cancellation, the Blue Devils still meet Appalachian State Thursday in Durham.
After a turbulent 2020-21 campaign in which Duke eventually canceled the remainder of its nonconference schedule and exited the ACC tournament due to COVID-19 issues of its own, this is the team’s first cancellation this season.
Saturday’s cancellation adds to a notable uptick in the pandemic’s impact on the sporting world. The NBA, NHL and NFL have each faced a rise in cases in recent weeks.
This is a developing story and will be updated as more information becomes available.
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Jonathan Levitan is a Trinity junior and sports editor of The Chronicle's 118th volume.