The Southeastern Conference has announced that beginning Thursday, the SEC Tournament will be held with only essential personnel allowed to attend.

And, the league is also going to hold all spring sports without fans in attendance throughout the end of the month, including baseball, softball and gymnastics.

The announcement says the SEC Tournament will go on with only essential personnel and limited family allowed to attend,

SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey issued the following statement:

"In light of recent developments beyond our control related to the spread of the coronavirus, including a recommendation from the NCAA COVID-19 Advisory Panel, and after consultation with our member universities, we have made the difficult decision to hold the 2020 SEC Men's Basketball Tournament in Nashville without spectators beginning with games of Thursday, March 12. Effective immediately, the policy will also apply to other SEC Championship events and on-campus regular season games scheduled through at least the end of March.

"After conferring with local and national health authorities, we remain confident in our ability to safeguard the health and well-being of our student-athletes, coaches and other staff who will be participating as well as the limited number of family members and media who will be in attendance at the tournament.

"We regret the inconvenience and disappointment this decision has caused our fans, especially those who have already traveled to Nashville for the tournament."

Championship events will be conducted with similar attendance restrictions effective March 12 through at least March 30, at which time the conference and its member universities will re-evaluate conditions.e moved to a later date.