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UCLA vs. Washington called off because of Huskies’ COVID-19 issues

UCLA coach Mick Cronin speaks with players during a timeout against Long Beach State on Nov. 15.
(Ashley Landis / Associated Press)
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UCLA’s basketball game against Washington on Sunday in Seattle has been called off because of COVID-19 issues within the Huskies’ program, The Times has learned.

The game will not be made up and the fifth-ranked Bruins will be granted a forfeit victory in the Pac-12, per conference policy, though there will be no adjustment to the team’s overall record.

Pac-12 officials had announced before the season they would require teams unable to play because of virus issues to forfeit but said in a statement Wednesday night that they would work with Washington to reschedule a game against Arizona that was postponed this week.

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Follow along as voice of UCLA Josh Lewin explains why he pushed to cover a basketball game in Vegas and football game in Pasadena on the same day.

According to one person close to the situation, the Huskies were dealing with seven positive tests on their roster and coaching staff. A Washington athletic department spokesperson said he could not discuss how many members of the team and coaching staff were under COVID-19 protocols but added that the players and staff were 100% vaccinated, meaning any positive tests would involve breakthrough cases.

Washington played Nevada on Nov. 24, six days before COVID-19 issues started impacting the Wolf Pack. Nevada coach Steve Alford announced he had tested positive for the virus on Nov. 30 and assistant Craig Neal did not attend a game against Pepperdine this week because of COVID-19 protocols.

Nevada’s game against North Texas scheduled for Saturday will not be played because of further COVID-19 issues within the Wolf Pack’s program.

UCLA is an underdog entering NCAA tournament play, but star Mac May is eager to help lead the Bruins to a title.

UCLA is familiar with COVID-19 disruptions. Last season, a game against Long Beach State was twice wiped off the Bruins’ schedule because of virus issues involving Long Beach. UCLA also had to play a makeup game at Oregon in March after a referee tested positive and his colleagues were put into contact tracing shortly before the teams were scheduled to play at Oregon in late December. A few earlier attempts to make up the game were scratched when the Ducks had to pause basketball activities because of the virus.

With the Bruins (7-1) taking finals next week, they will not play again until facing Marquette on Dec. 11 in Milwaukee.


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