The Boston University men's basketball team played its first game of the season on Monday against Holy Cross in which a new addition to the uniforms was officially revealed. The Terriers donned red facemasks, in addition to their red jerseys and shorts, while playing the Crusaders in compliance with a university policy.
Boston University's policy on face coverings mandates that they be worn at all times in any shared spaces, which includes spaces off campus when a student is representing the university in an athletic event. Holy Cross, however, did not have such a policy on its campus, where the game was played, so their players did not wear masks.
It's certainly a bit odd to look at, and perhaps a jarring reminder that these games are being played while a global pandemic is still ravaging through the country, but as far as gameplay was concerned, the masks did not provide much hindrance to the Terriers, who won Monday's game, 83-76.
An interesting wrinkle to this is that both teams play one another again on Tuesday, due to the Patriot League only allowing interconference games this season. This game will take place on BU's campus, meaning the mandatory mask policy extends to Holy Cross, since the school requires opponents to wear their masks as well.
It will reportedly be the first game in men's college basketball this season where both teams are wearing masks on the court. The two teams will play each other a total of six times this season.
The NCAA has not issued sport-wide policy on wearing masks. Instead, they are leaving it up to programs to decide at their own discretion. Some women's teams have worn facemasks, including No. 20 DePaul -- who are 6-3 on the season -- and Creighton University, which had their policy left to player discretion. Eight of the 13 players on the Bluejays' women's basketball team have done so this season.