SALT LAKE CITY — Both the men's and women's University of Utah basketball teams will start their seasons later than previously expected due to COVID-19 concerns.
The Utah men's team was scheduled to play at home against the University of New Orleans on Friday, but that game was canceled "after consulting with the team medical staff" in an effort "to keep the health and safety of the student-athletes, coaches and support staff at the forefront for both teams."
They Runnin' Utes will instead start their season Dec. 3 at home against the University of Washington.
The Salt Lake Tribune reported that the cancellation was due to a COVID-19 outbreak within the men’s basketball program, the severity of which has not been made public. However, Coach Larry Krystkowiak reportedly said on an ESPN 700 radio show Monday night that he had contracted the virus.
In addition, the women's basketball program announced Monday that it would temporarily "pause all basketball activities" because of a COVID-19 positive case and the subsequent required quarantine of fellow student-athletes. This means their first two games scheduled for Wednesday and Saturday against Southern Utah University and Utah Valley University, respectively, have been canceled.
The team's situation "will be evaluated" afterward. Their next game is scheduled for Friday, Dec. 4 at Oregon State University.