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Huggins: Backyard Brawl Won’t Be Played in 2020

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The basketball version of the Backyard Brawl will not be played this season, West Virginia head coach Bob Huggins announced on Thursday, as both teams scramble to re-configure their non-conference schedules.

The NCAA has approved a plan for the delayed season to begin no earlier than Nov. 25, and as such it will also be an abbreviated season of just 27 games.

Pitt will have 20 ACC games, while West Virginia will play 18 Big 12 games, and both teams are expected to play in exempt multiple-team events, or MTEs, with the Mountaineers scheduled to play in South Dakota, and Pitt tentatively expected to go to Orlando.

The rivalry, which entered a hiatus when the teams joined separate conferences in 2013 after spending most of their shared history in the Big East, was scheduled to be played for a fourth straight season in 2020 with the Panthers set to visit Morgantown.

Pitt has lost each of the three games in the resumption of the series and West Virginia has won four straight overall, while holding the series lead, 99-88. In June, the schools agreed to an extension to the four-year arrangement that was set to end after the 2020 game, keeping the rivalry on the hardwood through 2022-23.

Huggins said that the game had been postponed for the year, meaning that not playing in 2020-21 could cause the rivalry to be extended through 2023-24.

“It’s been postponed,” he said. “Moved back, delayed, whatever. That’s not going to happen this year.”

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