INDIANAPOLIS—Asking those in attendance to lower their heads in memory of the shared sacrifice the entire nation made over the last year, the NCAA men’s title game opened Monday evening with a moment of silence to honor the regular season games lost to Covid-19. “A lot of people worked really hard to make sure this could happen, but we didn’t want the season to end without paying our respects and acknowledging just how many games we lost along the way,” said NCAA President Mark Emmert, who claimed it was still hard to fathom the millions of dollars in advertising revenue that Covid had taken over the past year. “We are all hurting. You pray that you never see something like this, and then when all those early season tournaments were cancelled, we can only hope we never suffer through something as tragic as this again. There are so many TV contracts that almost didn’t make it. We just thought it would mean something to show CBS and all our affiliates that we are thinking about them in this difficult time.” At press time Emmert had made an announcement that all the profits from the 2021 NCAA tournament would be donated to essential brands affected by the pandemic.