Your Day in Women’s Basketball, November 9: Emma Meesseman tests positive for COVID-19

Meesseman quarantined abroad, won’t play for the Belgian national team

Scary news for Washington Mystics forward Emma Meesseman, who tested positive for the coronavirus this past week. She will miss the 2021 European Championships qualifiers for the Belgian national teams. On the basketball side of things, that’s certainly a blow for the country, but most importantly we are hoping for a speedy and painless recovery.

“I tested positive for Covid19 so this is another game for me now, but I am doing ok!” Meesseman wrote. “I am quarantined but I feel good! I will be rooting for the Belgian Cats and have full confidence they will bring back the wins, but above all I hope they will stay safe.”

Meesseman was infected by a teammate on the superteam UMMC Ekaterinburg, and it is hard to imagine that team will struggle much without her presence. Even abroad, this virus is dangerous.

Shifting gears here, it’s about that time, everybody. CONFERENCE PREVIEW SZN. Next up at The Next is a two-part Ivy League primer. This conference is sneaky-wide open and primed for upsets, with the effects of COVID-19 hitting hard. Up to, we can still expect Princeton, but it’ll play without three-time Ivy League Player of the Year Bella Alarie.

There’s a helpful chart below that explains it quite clearly: almost none of these rosters are at full capacity, including the threat to the throne Yale Bulldogs. Additionally, three teams — Columbia, Penn, and Princeton — have yet to practice, leaving the conference wacky and the title free for the taking.

Jenn Hatfield laid out the five biggest questions on the Ivy courts (not including of course, if they’ll even have seasons). Princeton might lose a step without Alaire, Penn is knocking at the door, and there might be a team playing spoiler this season. But I won’t spoil anything more than that, so feel free to find out for yourself here.

The ACC, meanwhile, is set to play in just two weeks, and a battle between two of the nation’s best looms large as South Carolina and Aliyah Boston take on N.C. State and Elissa Cunane. Other news around the ACC includes the NCAA granting eligibility to a Pitt grad transfer, BC picking up a talented (though not a top-100) recruit, and UNC adding a scouting guru to its prolific staff.

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