Reports of Notre Dame men’s hockey having positive COVID tests this morning made it seem like a possibility that the Irish would have to forfeit their first round NCAA tournament matchup against Boston College. After follow-up testing that confirmed the prior positive results, that forfeit is now a reality, and Notre Dame will unfortunately have to withdraw from the tournament.
BREAKING: CHN has learned that Notre Dame is out of the NCAA Tournament due to COVID protocols.— College Hockey News (@chnews) March 25, 2021
As we previously mentioned in the earlier post, the procedure laid out by the NCAA selection committee was that if a team had to withdraw due to COVID within 24 hours of the bracket being released, they could be replaced — but if a team had to withdraw after that, they were out, and the team scheduled to face them would advance automatically. There will also be no reseeding.
Since we’re well past the day after the selection show, this advances the Eagles to the quarterfinals. BC will face off against the winner of Saturday’s game between Boston University and St. Cloud, putting the Eagles one win away from the Frozen Four.
While we’re of course extremely disappointed that we’re going to have to wait a bit longer to see Boston College play in a men’s tournament game for the first time in far too long, it goes without saying that our primary concern here is for the good health of the Notre Dame players. While the end of the pandemic is in sight, this is another reminder that we’re not quite there yet. Hopefully the Irish’s cases are asymptomatic and the players are feeling well.