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Welcome back: Texas once again allowing limited numbers of fans back into Erwin Center

The Frank Erwin Center was empty due to COVID-19 as the Texas Longhorns competed against the Kansas State Wildcats on Saturday, Jan. 16.

Texas is once again opening its doors to basketball fans. 

A school spokesman said Sunday that limited fan attendance will be allowed at the Erwin Center again starting with the men’s basketball game Tuesday vs. No. 2 Baylor. Tipoff is scheduled for 6 p.m.

Fans were not allowed to attend the last four men’s home games in January due to COVID-19 protocols. Women's basketball games were closed as well.

For men's games, Texas had been allowing limited fan attendance and reporting anywhere from 2,400-2,500, although the actual in-person total was usually lower. The Erwin Center’s listed capacity is 16,540.

Also on Sunday, the school announced men's coach Shaka Smart would hold his regular Monday press conference via Zoom. Smart has not spoken publicly since announcing he tested positive for COVID-19 last Monday. 

No. 5 Texas (11-2, 5-2 Big 12) has seen three of its last four games either postponed or canceled because of COVID-19 issues. 

The team did not travel to Lexington over the weekend since Kentucky put its program on pause late last week due to COVID-19. The Longhorns and Wildcats will not reschedule their Big 12/SEC Challenge game this season.

On the scheduling front, Texas’ postponed game at Iowa State has been moved to Feb. 18. There are still no make-up dates scheduled yet for the earlier postponed road games at Baylor (Dec. 13) and TCU (Jan. 23).

Contact Brian Davis at 512-445-3957. Email bdavis@statesman.com or @BDavisAAS.