The Mid-American Conference clarified how they would determine the seeding for the both conference’s upcoming postseason tournament (March 10-13) and for the automatic qualifying spot for the NCAA Tournament via press release on Friday morning.
For the conference tournament, teams’ eligibility will be determined by conference record, with all regular applicable tiebreakers used, if necessary. If one of the eight teams selected on March 5 (men’s) or March 6 (women’s) cannot participate due to COVID-related issues and reports the issue with at least 48 hours advance notice (March 8 or 9), the next eligible team will be slotted in as the last remaining seed to replace the affected team. If a team is promoted into the MAC tournament, teams below the affected seed will slot up one seed to make up for the gap.
Once the bracket is set on March 10, the teams are final and the tournament advances. If a team cannot complete their obligation due to COVID issues, a no-contest will be declared, and their opponent will advance.
For the automatic qualifying spot in the NCAA, the AQ will go to the team which wins the conference tournament, as per most years. If the tournament cannot be completed, the regular season champion will be declared the AQ for postseason purposes. In the case of a multi-team tie, the appropriate tiebreakers will be utilized.
In the emergency case that there is no tournament or regular season champion due to COVID-related issues, the next eligible team in conference play will represent the MAC as the AQ. (This is, ideally, the second-place team in MAC play, but could also be any team below them, if COVID issues continue to arise.)
As part of the conference postseason qualifying policy, the top four teams in the conference are mandated to test for COVID if eliminated from postseason contention to ensure the eligibility of the teams remaining in play.