Fans limited for Notre Dame men's start

Tom Noie
South Bend Tribune

There won't be many fans in the Purcell Pavilion stands this winter for Notre Dame men's basketball games.

And no chance for the student body, once it returns from an extended winter break, to rush the court after a big win.

At least, to start.

The university announced Monday afternoon that attendance at the 9,149-seat arena will be limited to only guests of student-athletes and coaches of competing teams. The policy also holds for Irish women's basketball games at Purcell Pavilion and hockey games at Compton Family Ice Arena.

The policy is in accordance with campus health and safety protocols and in consultation with local health officials.

Anyone attending basketball or hockey games at Notre Dame will have to wear a mask and practice social distancing. The university said it will "continue to monitor the conditions and evaluate the possibility of welcoming additional (larger) audiences."

If that should happen, and that's a likely big "If," the campus community (students, faculty, staff) and then season ticket holders would receive priority to purchase single game tickets.

Notre Dame is schedule to open the season Saturday at No. 13 Michigan State. There will be no fans allowed at Breslin Center for that game, which tips at 8 p.m. and will be televised on Big Ten Network.

Notre Dame will play this season without fans at Purcell Pavilion.