ATLANTA -- The NCAA Board of Governors announced Monday they would relocate all seven championship events previously awarded out of the state of North Carolina for the 2016-17 academic year -- including the first and second rounds of the NCAA Mens' Basketball Championship tournament -- due to the state's bathroom law.
The seven events include (original city in parenthesis):
2016 Division I Women's Soccer Championship College Cup, December 2 and 4, 2016 (Cary, NC)
2016 Division III Men's and Women's Soccer Championships, December 2 and 3, 2016 (Greensboro, NC)
2017 Division I Men's Basketball Championship, first & second rounds, March 17 & 19, 2017 (Greensboro, NC)
2017 Division I Women's Golf Championships, regional, May 8-10, 2017 (Greenville, NC)
2017 Division III Men's and Women's Tennis Championships, May 22-27, 2017 (Cary, NC)
2017 Division I Women's Lacrosse Championship, May 26 & 28, 2017 (Cary, NC)
2017 Division II Baseball Championship, May 27-June 3, 2017 (Cary, NC)
The decision was made due to North Carolina's decision regarding its "bathroom law" and its ongoing actions regarding civil rights protections.
The NBA recently moved the 2017 All-Star Game from Charlotte to New Orleans for the same reason. A number of other sporting events have moved out of North Carolina, and other events have left the state, also citing the state's treatment of LGBT individuals.
“Fairness is about more than the opportunity to participate in college sports, or even compete for championships,” said Mark Emmert, NCAA president. “We believe in providing a safe and respectful environment at our events and are committed to providing the best experience possible for college athletes, fans and everyone taking part in our championships."
The NCAA decision points out that in addition to the state's refusal to provide legal protection to individuals within the LGBT community, five states, plus numerous cities across the nation prohibit travel to North Carolina for public employees and representatives of public institutions, which may include student athletes and campus athletics staff.
As a result, the events will be rescheduled to new locations, which will be announced soon.
(© 2016 WXIA)