UCLA Bruins pause men's college basketball activities, cancel game vs. North Carolina Tar Heels

Saturday's showdown between UCLA and North Carolina in Las Vegas has been canceled because of COVID-19 issues within the Bruins' men's basketball program, it was announced Friday.

With Ohio State dropping out of the CBS Sports Classic earlier this week and leaving Kentucky without an opponent, the Tar Heels and Wildcats will now face each other on Saturday at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas (5:30 p.m. ET).

The UNC-UK game will be a matchup of two of the three winningest college basketball programs of all time. The two teams last faced off in December 2020, with North Carolina winning 75-63. They've split their last six head-to-head matchups, but the Tar Heels lead the overall series 22-16.

UCLA (8-1) was forced to cancel its game against Alabama State on Wednesday because of COVID issues, hours after it had announced Mick Cronin would not be able to coach because of protocols. The No. 4 Bruins are now officially on pause, with the status of upcoming games undetermined. Their next scheduled games are against Cal Poly on Dec. 22 and Arizona on Dec. 30.

Ohio State (8-2) also had COVID-19 issues in its program, leading to the cancellation of its game against Kentucky. The No. 15 Buckeyes' next scheduled game is Tuesday against Tennessee-Martin, although it's unclear if that game will be played.