ST. LOUIS (SIU ATHLETICS) -- The Missouri Valley Conference Conference has adopted a new scheduling format for men's and women's basketball Conference games. The Conference will continue to play an 18-game format in which most MVC teams will face one another in a two-game series on back-to-back days at the same site. Each institution will play four road series and four home series and will also face their designated 'travel partner' in a single-game, home-and-home series. Men's basketball played league games using that scheduling model for the first 13 seasons (1907-08 thru 1919-20) before adopting the more traditional home/away scheduling model.
The new format significantly reduces travel and places an emphasis on the health and safety of student-athletes, coaches and staff. Rescheduling windows (Jan 23-24; Feb 20-21), plus reduced risk with less travel and fewer cross-team interactions should provide the league the best chance to play the most games. Additionally, the league's COVID-19 Working Group has worked tirelessly to develop testing and operational standards, and the league has employed KINEXON SafeZone technology to aid in contact tracing.
KINEXON SafeZone technology utilizes lightweight, wearable devices, called SafeTags, which will be used conference-wide by basketball student-athletes, coaches and select staff during practices and games. SafeTags can accurately calculate the proximity between individuals by distance and length of time in order to perform quick and accurate contact tracing. The devices will also be used by officials during all Conference basketball games.
Additional announcements regarding men's basketball television selections with the league's national television partners ESPN, CBS Sports Network, FOX Sports and NBC Sports Chicago will follow next week.