College basketball schedule 2020-21: Louisville pausing activities due to COVID-19, cancels Friday’s game

Matt Norlander / CBS Sports

Louisville became the latest high-profile college basketball program to pause activities due to issues with COVID-19 on Thursday night, when the school announced an indefinite halt after someone in the program tested positive for COVID-19. The Cardinals are off to a 4-0 start, but their game against UNC Greensboro on Friday will be canceled. Louisville is next scheduled to play Dec. 9 against No. 4 Wisconsin.

The school has not determined if that game will be affected by the COVID-19 issues in the program. Louisville is far from the only program to be hit with scheduling problems related to the coronavirus this season. Dozens of games have been canceled or postponed as the sport begins its season with the pandemic sweeping the nation.

As developments continue to unfold, we’ll be tracking all the latest news and notes surrounding scheduling snafus below in our tracker.

Notable postponements or cancellations

  • Dec. 1: Towson at Maryland 
  • Dec. 1: Alcorn State at DePaul
  • Dec. 1: Vanderbilt vs. UConn (Uncasville)
  • Dec. 2: Colorado at Arizona
  • Dec. 3: Vanderbilt at Legends Classic (Uncasville)
  • Dec. 4: UNC Greensboro at Louisville
  • Dec. 5: Ole Miss at Memphis       
  • Dec. 8: Fordham at Saint John’s
  • Dec. 12: Saint John’s at Texas Tech

Previous postponements or cancellations

  • Nov. 25: UTSA at Oklahoma 
  • Nov. 25: Virginia vs. Maine (Uncasville, Connecticut)
  • Nov. 25: Central Arkansas at Ole MIss
  • Nov. 25: Gardner-Webb at Duke
  • Nov. 25: Northern Arizona at Arizona
  • Nov. 25-27: Creighton at Crossover Classic (Sioux Falls, South Dakota)
  • Nov. 25-27: Texas A&M at Crossover Classic (Sioux Falls)
  • Nov. 25: Western Illinois at DePaul
  • Nov. 25: UMass Lowell vs. Florida
  • Nov. 25: Stanford vs. Utah Valley
  • Nov. 25: Drexel at Penn State
  • Nov. 26: Baylor vs. Arizona State at Empire Classic (Uncasville)
  • Nov. 26: Jackson State vs. Ole Miss
  • Nov. 27: Arkansas State at Ole Miss
  • Nov. 27; Baylor at Empire Classic (Uncasville)
  • Nov. 27: Virginia vs. Florida (Uncasville)
  • Nov. 27: Florida State vs. Gardner-Webb
  • Nov. 28 Oklahoma at UCF
  • Nov. 28: Chicago State at DePaul
  • Nov. 29: Baylor at Seton Hall
  • Nov. 29: Gardner-Webb at Georgia
  • Nov. 30: Long Beach State at UCLA
  • Nov. 30: Belmont Abbey at Charlotte


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South Korea implements intensive college entrance exam measures amid COVID-19

It’s a chilly, silent Thursday morning. Thousands of students warmly dressed in padded jackets, hasten their steps to schools which have been closed and disinfected for a week in lead-up to a momentous event in South Korea: the national college entrance exam.

a person standing in front of a window talking on a cell phone: A student wearing a face mask prays before the start of the annual college entrance examination amid the coronavirus pandemic at an exam hall in Seoul, South Korea, Dec. 3, 2020.

© Kim Hong-ji/AP
A student wearing a face mask prays before the start of the annual college entrance examination amid the coronavirus pandemic at an exam hall in Seoul, South Korea, Dec. 3, 2020.

a group of people standing next to an umbrella: Parents pray during a special service to wish for their children's success in the college entrance exams at the Jogyesa Buddhist temple in Seoul, South Korea, Dec. 3, 2020.

© Ahn Young-joon/AP
Parents pray during a special service to wish for their children’s success in the college entrance exams at the Jogyesa Buddhist temple in Seoul, South Korea, Dec. 3, 2020.

The exam, officially called the College Scholastic Ability Test, provides South Korean students a final report card for the public education they received from elementary school through high school. The results of this annual exam play a big part in determining to which university students can apply.

But this year, with COVID-19 upending traditional protocol, exam inspectors dressed in hazmat suits greet applicants with hand sanitizers and thermometers.

a group of colorful graffiti: A woman hangs on a paper note to wish for her child's success in the college entrance exams at the Jogyesa Buddhist temple in Seoul, South Korea, Dec. 3, 2020.

© Ahn Young-joon/AP
A woman hangs on a paper note to wish for her child’s success in the college entrance exams at the Jogyesa Buddhist temple in Seoul, South Korea, Dec. 3, 2020.

Before the COVID-19 outbreak, the exam day would be filled with exuberant cheering squads at the school gate, and parents handing out snacks or praying outside the school until the exam ends.

In fact, the entire nation celebrates the event. Authorities clear air traffic to make sure the exam’s listening sections are done in a silent environment. Businesses, including the stock market and public facilities, also open an hour late so students can make it to their test sites in less traffic.

(MORE: KCheering crowds greet South Korean students taking make-or-break college entrance exams)

This year, however, is different. Social distancing and a heavy focus on hygiene have replaced the celebrations.

“My daughter is taking the exam for the third time, and I am just relieved that she wasn’t diagnosed with COVID-19,” Kim Migyeong told ABC News. “Our whole family was nervous that one of us may be infected without symptoms and spread to our daughter, already exhausted with a long-term prep for examination.”

“I wish for the best, although this year high school seniors have had a hard time taking classes online and staying home to avoid COVID-19 infection,” Michelle Oh, who stood in front of Yangjae High School to send her son off to take the exam, told ABC News. “I saw on the news that confirmed patients can also take the exam, but there aren’t any alternatives for university interviews, so it’s best to avoid the virus.”

a group of people sitting at a table: Students wearing face masks wait for the start of the annual college entrance examination amid the coronavirus pandemic at an exam hall in Seoul, South Korea, Dec. 3, 2020.

© Kim Hong-ji/AP
Students wearing face masks wait for the start of the annual college entrance examination amid the coronavirus pandemic at an exam hall in Seoul, South Korea, Dec. 3, 2020.

This year, authorities have prioritized preventing cluster infections from inside test sites.

At the entrance of each site, supervisors

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3-D protein modeling suggests why COVID-19 infects some animals, but not others

3D protein modeling suggests why COVID-19 infects some animals, but not others
3D structure model of the receptor-binding domain of SARS-CoV-2 (in blue) interacting with the human ACE2 receptor (in gray). Amino acids important to the interaction, which are present only in COVID-susceptible animal species are highlighted in yellow. Sugars bound to the proteins are shown in pink. Credit: Rodrigues et al. 2020 (CC-BY 2.0)

Some animals are more susceptible to COVID-19 infection than others, and new research suggests this may be due to distinctive structural features of a protein found on the surface of animal cells. João Rodrigues of Stanford University, California, and colleagues present these findings in the open-access journal PLOS Computational Biology.

Previous research suggests that the current pandemic began when the virus that causes COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2, jumped from bats or pangolins to humans. Certain other animals, such as cattle and cats, appear to be susceptible to COVID-19, while others, such as pigs and chickens, are not. One zoo even reported infections in tigers. However, it was unclear why some animals are immune and others are not.

To address this question, Rodrigues and colleagues looked for clues in the first step of infection, when SARS-CoV-2’s “spike” protein binds to an “ACE2” receptor protein on the surface of an animal cell. They used computers to simulate the proteins’ 3-D structures and investigate how the spike protein interacts with different animals’ ACE2 receptors—similar to checking which locks fit a certain key.

The researchers found that certain animals’ ACE2 “locks” fit the viral “key” better, and that these animals, including humans, are susceptible to infection. Despite being approximations, the simulations pinpointed certain structural features unique to the ACE2 receptors of these susceptible species. The analysis suggest that other species are immune because their ACE2 receptors lack these features, leading to weaker interactions with spike proteins.

These findings could aid development of antiviral strategies that use artificial “locks” to trap the virus and prevent it from interacting with human receptors. They could also help improve models to monitor animal hosts from which a virus could potentially jump to humans, ultimately preventing future outbreaks.

“Thanks to open-access data, preprints, and freely available academic software, we went from wondering if tigers could catch COVID-19 to having 3-D models of protein structures offering a possible explanation as to why that is the case in just a few weeks,” Rodrigues says.

His team plans to continue refining the computational tools used in this study.

Dozens of mammals could be susceptible to SARS-CoV-2

More information:
Rodrigues JPGLM, Barrera-Vilarmau S, M. C. Teixeira J, Sorokina M, Seckel E, Kastritis PL, et al. (2020) Insights on cross-species transmission of SARS-CoV-2 from structural modeling. PLoS Comput Biol 16(12): e1008449.
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Boston University men’s ice hockey pauses all activities after positive COVID-19 case

Boston University is pausing all men’s ice hockey activities after a positive COVID-19 test within the program, the school said Thursday.

a sign on a pole: Boston University

© Provided by WCVB Boston
Boston University

The school said a member of the team’s “Tier 1 personnel” tested positive. The group, which includes student-athletes, coaches, managers and support staff, is tested three times a week in accordance with NCAA, Hockey East and school protocols.

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BU’s game against UConn that was scheduled for Saturday has been canceled. The game would have been the team’s season opener.

As of Tuesday, there have been 26 positive cases of COVID-19 at BU — 16 were among students and 10 among staff.


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READ THE FULL STORY:Boston University men’s ice hockey pauses all activities after positive COVID-19 case

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Boston University men’s hockey team pauses all activities after positive COVID-19 test

The Boston University men’s hockey team has paused all athletic activities and canceled Saturday’s game at UConn after a positive COVID-19 test.

a person walking down a sidewalk in front of a building: The BU men's hockey team has paused all activities at Agganis Arena.

© Jonathan Wiggs/Globe Staff
The BU men’s hockey team has paused all activities at Agganis Arena.

According a statement from the school, the positive test came from a member of the team’s Tier 1 personnel, which includes athletes, coaches, managers, and support staff. Tier 1 personnel are tested three times a week in accordance with NCAA, Hockey East, and university protocols.

“To ensure the health and safety of the BU campus and greater Boston community, the Department of Athletics and all of its varsity programs have been following state, city and University guidelines since returning to campus in August,” the statement read.

The Terriers were originally scheduled to open the men’s hockey season this weekend with a pair of games at Vermont, but that series was postponed when Vermont decided to delay the start of its men’s and women’s hockey and basketball seasons until Dec. 18.

Earlier this week, the Catamounts announced that the men’s hockey team had paused team activities following four positive coronavirus tests among the program’s Tier 1 personnel.

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Can a Legitimate College Football Champion Be Crowned in a Season Marred by COVID-19?

College football’s unprecedented season has resulted in twists that might cause some to believe crowning a national champion might come with an asterisk. In a season where the health and safety of players and coaches are in flux, it has shifted the strength of schedule – making it harder to seed teams as we head into playoffs. Brendan Gulick of BuckeyesNow joined SI’s Robin Lundberg to share his insight into what the finish line might look like in this year’s college football season.

Daily Cover: Ohio State runs out of the tunnel

Read more of SI’s Daily Cover stories here.

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Join a discussion about education in Michigan during COVID-19

What does the 2020 election mean for the future of Michigan schools? 

a desk with a laptop computer sitting on top of a wooden chair: A classroom sits empty at the Cesar Chavez Academy High School in Detroit last March after the pandemic hit.

© Mandi Wright, Detroit Free Press
A classroom sits empty at the Cesar Chavez Academy High School in Detroit last March after the pandemic hit.

Chalkbeat Detroit, the Education Trust-Midwest, and the Detroit Free Press are teaming up to host a conversation about the significance of the 2020 election at a time when the restrictions to curb the spread of coronavirus will increase inequities in schools across the state. 


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“As our policymakers look toward the new year amid an unprecedented crisis that has exacerbated long-standing inequities, it’s critical that they maintain a focus on working toward equity and fairness in education,” said Amber Arellano, executive director for the Education Trust-Midwest, a Royal Oak-based education research and advocacy organization.

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“Already, the wide opportunity gaps between Michigan’s students are expected to worsen, impacting urban and rural students. Having a diverse set of voices from across the aisle discussing the challenges and working toward solutions is more important than ever,” Arellano said.

Chalkbeat Detroit’s Koby Levin and the Detroit Free Press’ Nancy Kaffer will moderate the conversation. Panelists are:

  • Rep. Brad Paquette, a Republican from Niles who serves as the vice chair of the House Education Committee.
  • Rep. Darrin Camilleri, a Democrat from Brownstown Township who serves as the minority vice chair of the House Education Committee.
  • Ama Russell, a senior at Cass Technical High School and a Detroit youth activist.
  • Cara Lougheed, an educator in Rochester Hills and the 2019 Michigan Teacher of the Year.
  • Michael Hutson, a parent and member of the Michigan League for Public Policy. 

Before the event, Ife Martin, a junior at West Bloomfield High School who’s a spoken word artist with Inside Out Literary Arts, will perform. 

Expect to hear a discussion about how schools are coping with pandemic learning, equitable education funding, missing students, accountability during COVID-19, and the long-term effects of the pandemic.

The conversation takes place at 4 p.m. Dec. 7. Register for it here. 

More: Tracking coronavirus outbreaks in Michigan schools

More: Grosse Pointe Schools faces dwindling enrollment after a year of controversy, COVID-19

This article originally appeared on Detroit Free Press: Join a discussion about education in Michigan during COVID-19

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Covid-19: University students not dropping out despite disruption

By Sean Coughlan
BBC News family and education correspondent

student Covid tests

image copyrightAndrew Milligan

image captionStudents have been getting Covid tests this week ahead of going home in the “travel window”

The number of students dropping out of their university courses across the UK has been lower this term than in previous years.

Despite the pressures of the pandemic and campus lockdowns, figures from the Student Loans Company show a fall in those leaving this autumn.

About 5,500 students withdrew from courses, compared with 6,100 last year.

The figures have been released on the day that the “travel window” opens for students to go home for Christmas.

The lower drop-out rate reflects the lack of any better alternatives this year, suggested Nick Hillman, director of the Higher Education Policy Institute think-tank.

“What else are you going to do? You can’t travel and it’s hard to get a job,” he said.

“It’s not been as good a year as normal for students, but there are still lots of positives,” Mr Hillman added.

Nine-week gap

But many students heading home this week will not be returning to their universities for another nine weeks – as the government in England announced a staggered start to next term, with some students not back until 7 February.

image copyrightReuters
image captionStudents have been asked to take two tests three days apart ahead of travelling

The plan, to avoid a surge of students and the risk of spreading coronavirus, will see students returning over five weeks in the new year – with most courses starting online before a return to in-person teaching.

  • Mass testing for students gets under way

  • Two Covid tests for students and then leave in 24 hours

The first students returning from 4 to 8 January will be for hands-on, practical courses which are difficult to teach solely online – which will include medicine, nursing and dentistry; sciences which need to use laboratories; or music, dance and drama.

Other subjects, such as English or history, would be taught online at the start of term, with students back between 25 January and 7 February.

Students will be offered two lateral flow Covid tests when they arrive back – similar to the process for their departure.

image captionMomoh will be getting Covid tests and then heading home to Manchester

Momoh Suleman, studying social work at the University of Bradford, is sympathetic to the need for the delayed start – although wants something to be arranged about paying rent when he won’t be there.

“It’s the best idea to keep our families safe,” he said, and on balance he said it was right to have a staggered return if it reduced the risk of infection.

He is having two Covid tests this week before getting the train home to Manchester – and can’t wait to see his family, having decided it was safer not to see them during the term.

“I didn’t want to

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Key test: South Koreans sit university exam amid COVID-19 surge | South Korea

Nearly 500,000 high school students are sitting the test with stringent measures imposed to curb the virus.

South Korea fell quiet on Thursday as hundreds of thousands of students sat for the country’s high-stakes national university entrance exam amid a surge in coronavirus cases that has prompted new measures to curb its spread, including for candidates sitting the test.

Teenagers spend years preparing for the exam, which can mean a place in one of the elite colleges that are seen as key to future careers, incomes and even marriage prospects.

This year, the coronavirus pandemic has added to the pressure – delaying and disrupting the school year and at times forcing all classes online.

At the elite Ewha Girls’ Foreign Language High School many students arrived on their own or with their test-taking friends and some parents seemed more nervous than their children. Tightened curbs following a wave of new cases meant students were banned from cheering on their classmates at the school gates as they arrived for the exam.

“I’m actually quite relieved now that it’s all going to be over soon,” said 18-year-old Kim Chae-eun.

“This exam is important because Korean society makes you study your whole life up till this point for this one exam.”

Only parents were at the school gates because students were banned from cheering on their classmates because of coronavirus restrictions [Jung Yeon-je/AFP]
The annual College Scholastic Ability Test, is a high-pressure standardised entrance exam, that can set the course for young South Koreans’ future careers [Jung Yeon-je/AFP]

South Korea brought its outbreak under control earlier in the year with an effective system of  “trace, test and treat”, but in recent weeks new cases have surged again.

On Thursday, the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA) announced 540 new cases, bringing the country’s total caseload to 35,703, and the authorities have warned measures might need to be tightened further if cases are not brought under control this week.

The country operates a five-tier social-distancing system and greater Seoul – home to approximately half the country’s population – was put on Level 2 on November 24 as cases began to rise.

The exam itself is a particular concern, with nearly 500,000 pupils gathering in test centres across the country.

Students were checked on arrival and those showing temperatures of 37.5 Celsius (99.5 Fahrenheit) or higher – or other coronavirus symptoms – had to take the test in a separate, designated area.

Plastic see-through dividers were set up on each desk and students were required to wear masks throughout the test.

All candidates were advised to refrain from gathering and talking during breaks, with exam rooms to be ventilated after each session.

Quiet, please

The exam itself was delayed for two weeks due to the earlier disruptions to teaching, as all high schools across the country returned to online classes for a week to try and prevent school clusters.

“It will be even more difficult and worrisome to take the exam in the coronavirus

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Oregon State University COVID-19 tracing program going national

The project started in April with the goal of finding out how prevalent the virus is in communities.

CORVALLIS, Ore. — A first-of-its-kind COVID-19 tracking program that started at Oregon State University (OSU) is going national.

Last April, OSU researchers began randomly testing communities for COVID-19. Their goal was to find out how prevalent the virus was. The researchers teamed up with health care workers and went to door to door at random offering up free COVID-19 tests. Their goal was to test even those carriers with no symptoms and to estimate how many people in the community were infected. The project was named TRACE COVID-19.

“The number of people infected is a key metric and it’s a key driver of the epidemic,” said project leader Ben Dalziel. “As an infectious disease, the number of people who are infected now plays a big role in determining how many people will become infected in the near future.”

It’s information that could play a critical role when it comes to deciding when a state should loosen restrictions or tighten them.

Over the months the program has evolved to include testing wastewater for COVID-19 as well. That’s because with every flush of the feces of an infected person, an inactive form of the virus enters the system.

“There’s a really good correlation between the presence of the virus in wastewater and the prevalence,” said Dalziel.

RELATED: Sewer sampling detects COVID-19 in every Corvallis neighborhood

Now, the OSU-based project is going national.

In November, researchers received a $2 million grant from the David and Lucile Packard foundation to create a national TRACE center, expanding OSU’s program to universities across the country.

“We see a crying need for that more real-time data elsewhere in the country as well,” said Chad English, science program officer for the Packard Foundation.

The researchers say the real-time data could also play a big role in tracking the success of the COVID-19 vaccines and lifting restrictions.

“How vaccine distribution may be impacting… in decreasing prevalence… all that requires information on what the virus is doing,” said Dalziel.

“This is the difference between knowing whether it’s safe to reopen our economies or whether it’s time for us to hunker down,” said English.

RELATED: OSU researchers explain development and distribution of vaccines

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