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Arizona Wildcats' opener with NAU canceled because of positive Lumberjack test
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Arizona Wildcats' opener with NAU canceled because of positive Lumberjack test

Arizona-Northern Arizona

Arizona forward Ira Lee (11) loses the race to a loose ball to Northern Arizona forward Brooks DeBisschop (22) in the first half of their early season game at McKale Center, Tucson, Ariz., Nov. 6, 2019.

Arizona's season opener against NAU for Wednesday is being canceled because of a positive test within the Lumberjack program, a source confirmed to the Star on Monday morning and Arizona announced Monday afternoon.

The news was first reported by Stadium, also quoting a source.

Arizona's statement said the game won't be played as scheduled "due to a positive COVID-19 case within the NAU men’s basketball program as well as ensuing contact tracing and mitigation protocols." 

"The news of this cancellation is very disappointing to student-athletes, coaches and fans," UA's statement said. "However, health and safety must remain our top priorities as we move forward this season."

Arizona, which is now scheduled to open on Friday against Grambling State, is expected to try to reschedule the game or find another opponent for another date. The Wildcats have the weekend of Dec. 11-13 open, but NAU is scheduled to host UC Riverside on Dec. 10 and then travel to play at Gonzaga on Dec. 12.

Because COVID-19 was expected to force cancellations and other scheduling issues this season, the NCAA allowed teams to schedule up to 27 games but will require only 13 to be considered for the NCAA Tournament.

The Wildcats are next scheduled to face Grambling State on Friday at 3 p.m. You can find a breakdown of Arizona's nonconference opponents here. The Wildcats' updated schedule is below:

ARIZONA'S 2020 MEN'S BASKETBALL SCHEDULE

Wednesday: NAU — POSTPONED

Friday: GRAMBLING, 3 p.m. (Pac-12 Networks)

Sunday: UTEP*, 4 p.m. (Pac-12 Networks)

Dec. 2: COLORADO, 6 p.m. (Pac-12 Networks)

Dec. 5: NORTHERN COLORADO, time TBA, (Pac-12 Networks)

Dec. 9: CAL STATE BAKERSFIELD, 5 p.m. (Pac-12 Networks)

Dec. 16: CAL BAPTIST, 5 p.m. (Pac-12 Networks)

Dec. 19: at Stanford, time TBA (Pac-12 Networks)

Dec. 22: MONTANA, 5 p.m. (Pac-12 Networks)

Week of Dec. 30-Jan 3: at Washington/Washington State, time and TV TBA

Week of Jan. 6-10: UCLA/USC, time and TV TBA

Week of Jan. 13-17: at Oregon/Oregon State, time and TV TBA

Week of Jan. 20-24: at Arizona State, time and TV TBA

Week of Jan. 27-31 CAL/STANFORD, time and TV TBA

Week of Feb. 3-7: at Colorado/Utah, time and TV TBA

Week of Feb. 10-14: OREGON/OREGON STATE, time and TV TBA

Week of Feb. 17-21: at UCLA/USC, time and TV TBA

Feb. 24-28: WASHINGTON/WASHINGTON STATE, time and TV TBA

March 6/7: ARIZONA STATE, time and TV TBA

* Southwest Classic multi-team event

Contact sports reporter Bruce Pascoe at 573-4146 or bpascoe@tucson.com. On Twitter @brucepascoe


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