BOSTON (CBS) — Boston University hockey and basketball are gearing up for the 2020-21 season. But when those teams take the ice or the hardwood, they won’t be met with applause from Terrier Nation.
BU announced Thursday that they will not be hosting fans at hockey or basketball games this season, due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Athletic Director Drew Marrochello made the announcement in a letter to the BU community on Thursday.
“Due to the current public health guidelines in the State of Massachusetts regarding the reopening of large venues and limits on gathering sizes, we unfortunately will not be able to accommodate spectators for this season,” Marrochello wrote. “While we are disappointed to share this news with our loyal and supportive fans, this decision is an important step in continuing to provide a healthy environment for our student-athletes, and our entire BU community. Although the seats will be empty, we will be providing in-depth coverage of our teams on streaming platforms — CBS (hockey) and ESPN+ (basketball) — for you to still watch and support us from afar.
“I look forward to the day when we can say hello (without Zoom), and when you can cheer for your favorite Terriers in person. Until then, please know how much all of us appreciate your continued support and hope that you are safe and well,” he concluded.
Last week, BU athletics paused in-person practice and training for a week after an increase in COVID cases on campus. Neither hockey or basketball has a schedule for the 2020-21 season.
The men’s basketball team won its first-ever Patriot League title last season and qualified for the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2011. But the tournament was canceled one day after the Terriers clinched their conference crown due to the pandemic. The women’s hoop team went 18-12 last season and won their Patriots League opener against American University before the tournament was canceled.
Men’s hockey finished the season 13-13-8, with the Hockey East Tournament canceled before any games could be played. The lady Terriers went 24-8-4 during the regular season, but lost both of their games to Maine in the Hockey East quarterfinals.