Minneapolis to host 2024 Big Ten Tournament

#51      
If you're talking about the Heritage Bank Center, I think the B1G can shoot a little higher than that. And besides that arena is mainly used for hockey nowadays anyway. Plus Cincy itself isn't a very big metro area and I don't know if they'd have the hotel space near downtown that the B1G would need.
Cincy metro is actually slightly bigger than Indianapolis metro area in population. I'm sure there are plenty of hotel rooms.
 
#53      

Tevo

Wilmette, IL
I understand your point about Columbus. However, Indy is a virtual home game for IU and Purdue given (1) the proximity of their campuses to the city (50 miles from Bloomington and 60 miles from WL, each both straight shots on the interstate hwys); and (2) the concentration of alums in the metro area. Detroit, likewise, is a virtual home game for Michigan and Sparty for the same reasons

I'm down with Indy being the default site and never moving it from there given the quality of the arena, the local amenities for fans, and its geographical centrality. Occasional variety, however, wouldn't hurt, as long as the venue isn't on the frontier of the BT empire (speaking as someone living in such a place, DC, with the unwashed Huns [ACC and BE fans] ready to storm the walls at any moment.)
I figure Chicago is split NU and Illinois (but plenty of other B1G fans live there). Indy is split IU and PU. Detroit is split UM and MSU. There’s no true neutral site, so the split cities are as close as we’ll get. Columbus is JUST OSU and is their actual home town, so that’s out.
 
#54      

IlliniKat91

Chicago, IL
I figure Chicago is split NU and Illinois (but plenty of other B1G fans live there). Indy is split IU and PU. Detroit is split UM and MSU. There’s no true neutral site, so the split cities are as close as we’ll get. Columbus is JUST OSU and is their actual home town, so that’s out.
The majority of NU grads end up leaving the area and you're much more likely to find more Iowa, Wisconsin, Michigan, and Notre Dame alumni here than NU.

I get what you're saying, that in theory the city should be spilt by the two nearest B1G schools, but we're really not. Hell, you're more likely to find more SEC fans than NU fans around here.
 
#55      

altgeld88

Bethesda, Maryland
I figure Chicago is split NU and Illinois (but plenty of other B1G fans live there). Indy is split IU and PU. Detroit is split UM and MSU. There’s no true neutral site, so the split cities are as close as we’ll get. Columbus is JUST OSU and is their actual home town, so that’s out.
I don't see it. Your argument hinges on the assumption that OSU fans in the arena would vastly outnumber those from competitor schools. I believe that tickets are allocated by school.

In Chicago, my experience many years ago was that Illinois fans vastly outnumbered NU fans for such events (based on the generally dreadful performance of NU's program and far more Illinois alums living in Chicago than NU alums), and yet never did I sense that holding the BTT in Chicago afforded either the Illini or NU an advantage. That's because the outnumbering in the local market was neutralized by the lack of an advantage inside the arena in terms of numbers. Similarly, I've never sensed that Indy affords Purdue or IU an advantage, which is why I'm happy with the BTT making its permanent home there. At the margin, sure, local IU fans can snap up tickets from those selling theirs (e.g., when their teams lose early in the tourney.) I've never sensed, however, that gives IU (or Purdue) a home-court advantage, nor have I heard any credible claims that it does.

OSU never plays in the Nationwide Arena downtown. It's a physically neutral site and I can't see an argument that OSU would have any sort of advantage, besides a short bus ride.
 
#56      

Tevo

Wilmette, IL
I don't see it. Your argument hinges on the assumption that OSU fans in the arena would vastly outnumber those from competitor schools. I believe that tickets are allocated by school.

In Chicago, my experience many years ago was that Illinois fans vastly outnumbered NU fans for such events (based on the generally dreadful performance of NU's program and far more Illinois alums living in Chicago than NU alums), and yet never did I sense that holding the BTT in Chicago afforded either the Illini or NU an advantage. That's because the outnumbering in the local market was neutralized by the lack of an advantage inside the arena in terms of numbers. Similarly, I've never sensed that Indy affords Purdue or IU an advantage, which is why I'm happy with the BTT making its permanent home there. At the margin, sure, local IU fans can snap up tickets from those selling theirs (e.g., when their teams lose early in the tourney.) I've never sensed, however, that gives IU (or Purdue) a home-court advantage, nor have I heard any credible claims that it does.

OSU never plays in the Nationwide Arena downtown. It's a physically neutral site and I can't see an argument that OSU would have any sort of advantage, besides a short bus ride.

For each team's Game 1, you're right. You can only have, generally, 1/10th (14th?) of the stadium with your fans. But as soon as the first 2, 3, 5 teams lose, those fans usually bail, selling their remaining tickets to whomever is outside trying to buy them. If OSU, in Columbus, were to win their first game, their 2nd game would have FAR more OSU fans, than if, say, Rutgers or Minnesota won their 1st game. The promixity to your fan base makes it very easy to start filling the stadium with the less-committed-but-eager-to-watch-a-winner fans who wouldn't commit to buying the whole ticket package before the tournament started.

This also happens in Chicago, when Illinois wins, but because there are SO many B1G fans from all schools in Chicago, it also works for any other schools that win their Game 1's. Indy is also centrally located enough that fans from Illinois or OSU or UM might drive in to buy up loser's tickets for Game 2. Detroit, less so, but maybe. Columbus? The vast majority of loser tickets would be bought by OSU fans and they'd have a real advantage.

The only caveat is that OSU fans don't really give a crap about basketball.
 
#57      

altgeld88

Bethesda, Maryland
For each team's Game 1, you're right. You can only have, generally, 1/10th (14th?) of the stadium with your fans. But as soon as the first 2, 3, 5 teams lose, those fans usually bail, selling their remaining tickets to whomever is outside trying to buy them. If OSU, in Columbus, were to win their first game, their 2nd game would have FAR more OSU fans, than if, say, Rutgers or Minnesota won their 1st game. The promixity to your fan base makes it very easy to start filling the stadium with the less-committed-but-eager-to-watch-a-winner fans who wouldn't commit to buying the whole ticket package before the tournament started.

This also happens in Chicago, when Illinois wins, but because there are SO many B1G fans from all schools in Chicago, it also works for any other schools that win their Game 1's. Indy is also centrally located enough that fans from Illinois or OSU or UM might drive in to buy up loser's tickets for Game 2. Detroit, less so, but maybe. Columbus? The vast majority of loser tickets would be bought by OSU fans and they'd have a real advantage.

The only caveat is that OSU fans don't really give a crap about basketball.
Your final sentence made me laugh. Yeah, to an extent, even when their team is a winner. And yet they pull serious talent.

It seems to me that we'd encounter the same problem of fan concentration in Indy with two teams in close proximity, and also would in Detroit. Columbus and Detroit aren't that much farther from Chicago, say, than Indy is. It's only 90 minutes from Indy to Columbus on 70. I get your point.

As I noted, I'm, happy to make the BTT home permanently in Indy, largely for its central location and facilities. And, back to the original topic, I'm confident that Kevin Warren will eagerly experiment with Minneapolis as the location, and then discover it was an only-slightly-less-terrible idea than DC or NYC.
 
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#61      

Ransom Stoddard

Ordained Dudeist Priest
Johns Creek, GA
I'm sorry folks, but each school should have the opportunity to host the B1G Tournament. If they are in the Big Ten, they deserve to host it. I think Chicago or Indy as the options isn't exactly fair.
I guess that would depend on what you mean by "host". Some of these college towns don't have the infrastructure, hotel rooms, etc. to provide the kind of experience Chicago, Indy, Minneapolis, and Detroit can do. Lincoln, West Lafayette, Bloomington IN, Happy Valley, and TBH Chambana aren't all that appealing compared to the 4 major cities I listed.
 
#62      
I guess that would depend on what you mean by "host". Some of these college towns don't have the infrastructure, hotel rooms, etc. to provide the kind of experience Chicago, Indy, Minneapolis, and Detroit can do. Lincoln, West Lafayette, Bloomington IN, Happy Valley, and TBH Chambana aren't all that appealing compared to the 4 major cities I listed.
And, as mentioned, Minneapolis will be the first location that is in absolutely no way neutral … NO SCHOOL has “hosted” the BTT before this. Even DC is home to large alumni bases from multiple schools besides Maryland.
 
#63      
And, as mentioned, Minneapolis will be the first location that is in absolutely no way neutral … NO SCHOOL has “hosted” the BTT before this. Even DC is home to large alumni bases from multiple schools besides Maryland.
At least Minneapolis has a suitable venue that is not on the Minnesota campus, i.e., not in The Barn. In most cases (Michigan, MSU, Nebraska, Illinois, Indiana, Rutgers, PSU, Purdue, Iowa, etc) the host team would literally be playing on their home court and not just in their home town.
 
#64      

Ransom Stoddard

Ordained Dudeist Priest
Johns Creek, GA
At least Minneapolis has a suitable venue that is not on the Minnesota campus, i.e., not in The Barn. In most cases (Michigan, MSU, Nebraska, Illinois, Indiana, Rutgers, PSU, Purdue, Iowa, etc) the host team would literally be playing on their home court and not just in their home town.
In theory, UIUC and Northwestern could host in Chicago, IU and PU in Indy, tOSU in Cleveland, Rutgers in NYC, MD in DC/Baltimore, and scUM (and perhaps MSU) in Detroit. But there's nothing arround Lincoln and Iowa City that could remotely fit the bill for the type of experience the BTT has become, and Happy Valley's also a long stretch from either Pittsburgh or Philly.

I guess what I'm saying is that the tourney should only be in a metro of sufficient size as to support the event--which leaves us back at Chicago, Indy, Detroit, Minneapolis, or Cleveland, with DC/Baltimore and NYC as examples of "don't do that again." I don't have a problem with it being in MSP other than the weather there can still be horrible in March.
 
#65      
Cleveland is out and people on here should really stop bringing it up as an option. The MAC has had their tourney there for 2 decades and have no signs of leaving anytime soon. Yeah, the B1G would be a great get for them but I doubt it ever goes there.

The major metro areas near Lincoln and Iowa City would be Omaha and Des Moines. Omaha would likely be out as I can't see the B1G hosting the tournament at a Big East venue like that (MSG excepted of course). Des Moines has about 13,000 hotel rooms in their metro area which is probably enough for an early round NCAA Tournament venue but not for a big event like the B1G tournament.
 
#66      
I am planning on comparing BTT site possibilities a bit more in my free time, but I thought I would start with a kind of interesting post about this. :) Of all of the metros in the Big Ten footprint, these are the "major metros" that have at least a very significant suburban population within a Big Ten state, with the exception of Louisville, KY-IN due to it literally having a major college team located in that city and an SEC school that takes up the vast majority of the remaining fan base (in order of population):

New York, NY-NJ-PA: 20.14 million
Chicago, IL-IN-WI: 9.62 million
Washington, DC-MD-VA-WV: 6.39 million
Philadelphia, PA-NJ: 6.25 million
Detroit, MI: 4.39 million
Minneapolis, MN-WI: 3.69 million
Baltimore, MD: 2.84 million
St. Louis, MO-IL: 2.82 million
Pittsburgh, PA-WV: 2.37 million
Cincinnati, OH-IN: 2.26 million
Columbus, OH: 2.14 million
Indianapolis, IN: 2.11 million
Cleveland, OH: 2.09 million
Milwaukee, WI: 1.57 million
Omaha, NE-IA: 967,604
Des Moines, IA: 709,466

Given their outlier status geographically and significantly smaller populations, I would argue Omaha and Des Moines get the axe right away, lol. Next, I used LinkedIn profiles to look at which of the remaining metros had the most Big Ten alumni (note, not everyone has a LinkedIn profile, so these numbers would obviously be bigger in reality ... but it's a nice estimate):

Chicago, IL-IN-WI: 371,557
New York, NY-NJ-PA: 351,053
Minneapolis, MN-WI: 237,022
Washington, DC-MD-VA-WV: 229,729
Detroit, MI: 213,548
Columbus, OH: 160,108
Philadelphia, PA-NJ: 145,311
Indianapolis, IN: 111,854
Baltimore, MD: 71,203
Pittsburgh, PA-WV: 50,613
Milwaukee, WI: 45,378
Cleveland, OH: 44,412
Cincinnati, OH-IN: 35,982
St. Louis, MO-IL: 25,206

Given the low Big Ten alumni, the fact that 30% come from Illinois alone and its association with the MVC ... St. Louis gets the boot, as well. Additionally, I think Cincinnati should be eliminated, given OSU contributes 44% of the B1G alumni, it doesn't have a GREAT arena and it is definitely going to soon be a Big XII city, IMO, with Cincinnati joining. So, next I wanted to see which metros only had a lot of B1G alumni due to one school. These metros were totally dominated by one school (at least 65%), and thus strictly from an "alumni perspective," they are eliminated from my ideal locations:

Columbus, OH: 91% Ohio State, leaving 15,047 for the other 13 schools
Minneapolis, MN-WI: 78% Minnesota, leaving 52,445 for the other 13 schools
Pittsburgh, PA-WV: 73% Penn State, leaving 13,576 for the other 13 schools
Baltimore, MD: 67% Maryland, leaving 57,837 for the other 13 schools

Even though it didn't make the cutoff of 65%, I also see Philadelphia (60% PSU) as problematic, given PSU fans are incredibly apathetic about basketball, it seems. Additionally, even though Milwaukee is within a short driving distance for a massive concentration of Illinois fans and a decent enough drive for the Michigan schools, its 64% concentration of Wisconsin alumni is giving it the boot for the most ideal locations. Cleveland also gets the boot for being 63% OSU, not that central and not that easy for air travel. So, that leaves us with Chicago, Indianapolis, New York, DC and Detroit. As you begin to dissect these options, it is easy to see why the BTT has been hosted where it has over the years ... these are in opposite/"count down" order of how much I think they make sense:

Detroit: In many ways, Detroit actually seems like an underrated contender. It has almost 213k Big Ten alumni, with two schools (Michigan at 99,381 and MSU at 88,591) having massive alumni bases, not to mention passionate fan bases that would show up. It's a large metro area with plenty of direct flights, and it has a great arena for hosting. However, no other school has more than 3,000 alumni besides OSU (3,878), and it is a pretty long drive for all other fan bases besides MAYBE Indiana/Purdue fans living in Northern Indiana. Additionally, while I am sure it is improving ... Downtown Detroit frankly does not hold a candle to its most similar competitor here, Indianapolis.

Washington, DC: While many will think of this as a less-than-ideal location, DC actually has a ton of Big Ten alumni ... 56% are from Maryland, but there are still 11 Big Ten schools with over 5,000, and 2 others (Michigan at 12,252 and PSU at 26,989) with over 10,000. Additionally, many see DC as far more of a "destination" than Detroit, and flights would be easy. The main problem I see here is that attendance might hinge too heavily on how good Maryland is, as a lot of the classically passionate Big Ten basketball fan bases are in the Midwest and either (A) do not have that many alumni in the metro or (B) force their fans to pay for an expensive trip.

New York: I know people got upset about the BTT in the Big Apple, but as someone who went to NYC for the first time last fall and stayed in Chelsea (i.e., not far from MSG) ... come on, this is a great host site occasionally. NYC is the biggest destination in Big Ten Country, it is extremely easy to travel to, it provides incredible exposure in an iconic arena and it has a TON of Big Ten alumni. On that last note, 12 Big Ten schools have at least 5,000 alumni, 9 schools have at least 10,000 and 4 schools have over 20,000. Rutgers' newly energized fan base (157,458 alumni in the area) would definitely show up, but even if they lost early ... you have 28,269 Michigan grads, 24,371 from Maryland, 14,992 from Wisconsin, 13,145 from Indiana, etc. I wouldn't want NYC to be the location TOO often, but if this thing is going to rotate outside of the traditional two sites of Chicago and Indy ... this is the most logical spot.

Chicago: Every fiber of my being wants to put Chicago at #1, but the area around the UC just simply isn't great ... and that's the ONLY thing holding Chicago back. Chicago has over 370,000 Big Ten alumni, and 7 schools have over 15,000. Even if Illinois loses early (and its 118,349 alumni in the area stay away), you have basketball-crazy fan bases ready to gobble up those tickets - Purdue at 38,207, Indiana at 35,539, Wisconsin at 28,168, Iowa at 25,652, MSU at 19,659, Michigan at 19,901, etc. On top of that, it is an incredibly easy drive for fan bases of Wisconsin, Purdue, Indiana, MSU, Michigan and Iowa, and Chicago is one of the easiest flights to book in the nation. The ONLY reason Indy will finish ahead here is the absolutely amazing job the city has done with its downtown.

Indianapolis: This is, sadly, the best spot for the BTT. While it has fewer Big Ten alumni than Chicago, NYC, Minneapolis, DC, Detroit, Columbus and Philadelphia, it has a lot for its relatively small size, and it truly embraces the event unlike the other cities listed above. Indiana (54,017) and Purdue (44,738) are the only schools with sizable alumni bases in the area, but it is a super easy drive for Illinois fans, OSU fans, MSU fans and Michigan fans. Again, though, the real selling point for Indy is its ability AS A HOST and the niceness of Downtown Indianapolis - things that are hard to quantify. The one caveat for Indianapolis is that attendance will likely hinge on Indiana, Illinois and Purdue being good/still in the tournament.

In summary, if you don't want to read all of my rambling, the BTT should really rotate between Chicago, Indy and an East Coast location, IMO; with our additions out east, the latter seems only fair, not to mention a great marketing opportunity. However, considering you can drive from DC to NYC in about the same time it takes to get from Iowa City to Chicago ... I would say axe DC and make Madison Square Garden the only location out there. If it were up to me, the sites would go like this:

2021-22: Indianapolis
2022-23: Chicago
2023-24: New York
2024-25: Indianapolis
2025-26: Chicago
2026-27: New York

And repeat.
 
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#69      

Illin618

I forgot the last i in my username
Southern IL
Indy Chicago are great since most fans drive

DC , NYC total disasters

Minneapolis is a long long drive but since it is in our historical footprint I am OK with giving it a try

Others I hope they never do

Pittsburgh
Cleveland
Detroit
St Louis

I would be open to trying Milwaukee
St. Louis does men's The Valley tournament around the same time every year.
 
#70      
I am planning on comparing BTT site possibilities a bit more in my free time, but I thought I would start with a kind of interesting post about this. :) Of all of the metros in the Big Ten footprint, these are the "major metros" that have at least a very significant suburban population within a Big Ten state, with the exception of Louisville, KY-IN due to it literally having a major college team located in that city and an SEC school that takes up the vast majority of the remaining fan base (in order of population):

New York, NY-NJ-PA: 20.14 million
Chicago, IL-IN-WI: 9.62 million
Washington, DC-MD-VA-WV: 6.39 million
Philadelphia, PA-NJ: 6.25 million
Detroit, MI: 4.39 million
Minneapolis, MN-WI: 3.69 million
Baltimore, MD: 2.84 million
St. Louis, MO-IL: 2.82 million
Pittsburgh, PA-WV: 2.37 million
Cincinnati, OH-IN: 2.26 million
Columbus, OH: 2.14 million
Indianapolis, IN: 2.11 million
Cleveland, OH: 2.09 million
Milwaukee, WI: 1.57 million
Omaha, NE-IA: 967,604
Des Moines, IA: 709,466

Given their outlier status geographically and significantly smaller populations, I would argue Omaha and Des Moines get the axe right away, lol. Next, I used LinkedIn profiles to look at which of the remaining metros had the most Big Ten alumni (note, not everyone has a LinkedIn profile, so these numbers would obviously be bigger in reality ... but it's a nice estimate):

Chicago, IL-IN-WI: 371,557
New York, NY-NJ-PA: 351,053
Minneapolis, MN-WI: 237,022
Washington, DC-MD-VA-WV: 229,729
Detroit, MI: 213,548
Columbus, OH: 160,108
Philadelphia, PA-NJ: 145,311
Indianapolis, IN: 111,854
Baltimore, MD: 71,203
Pittsburgh, PA-WV: 50,613
Milwaukee, WI: 45,378
Cleveland, OH: 44,412
Cincinnati, OH-IN: 35,982
St. Louis, MO-IL: 25,206

Given the low Big Ten alumni, the fact that 30% come from Illinois alone and its association with the MVC ... St. Louis gets the boot, as well. Additionally, I think Cincinnati should be eliminated, given OSU contributes 44% of the B1G alumni, it doesn't have a GREAT arena and it is definitely going to soon be a Big XII city, IMO, with Cincinnati joining. So, next I wanted to see which metros only had a lot of B1G alumni due to one school. These metros were totally dominated by one school (at least 65%), and thus strictly from an "alumni perspective," they are eliminated from my ideal locations:

Columbus, OH: 91% Ohio State, leaving 15,047 for the other 13 schools
Minneapolis, MN-WI: 78% Minnesota, leaving 52,445 for the other 13 schools
Pittsburgh, PA-WV: 73% Penn State, leaving 13,576 for the other 13 schools
Baltimore, MD: 67% Maryland, leaving 57,837 for the other 13 schools

Even though it didn't make the cutoff of 65%, I also see Philadelphia (60% PSU) as problematic, given PSU fans are incredibly apathetic about basketball, it seems. Additionally, even though Milwaukee is within a short driving distance for a massive concentration of Illinois fans and a decent enough drive for the Michigan schools, its 64% concentration of Wisconsin alumni is giving it the boot for the most ideal locations. Cleveland also gets the boot for being 63% OSU, not that central and not that easy for air travel. So, that leaves us with Chicago, Indianapolis, New York, DC and Detroit. As you begin to dissect these options, it is easy to see why the BTT has been hosted where it has over the years ... these are in opposite/"count down" order of how much I think they make sense:

Detroit: In many ways, Detroit actually seems like an underrated contender. It has almost 213k Big Ten alumni, with two schools (Michigan at 99,381 and MSU at 88,591) having massive alumni bases, not to mention passionate fan bases that would show up. It's a large metro area with plenty of direct flights, and it has a great arena for hosting. However, no other school has more than 3,000 alumni besides OSU (3,878), and it is a pretty long drive for all other fan bases besides MAYBE Indiana/Purdue fans living in Northern Indiana. Additionally, while I am sure it is improving ... Downtown Detroit frankly does not hold a candle to its most similar competitor here, Indianapolis.

Washington, DC: While many will think of this as a less-than-ideal location, DC actually has a ton of Big Ten alumni ... 56% are from Maryland, but there are still 11 Big Ten schools with over 5,000, and 2 others (Michigan at 12,252 and PSU at 26,989) with over 10,000. Additionally, many see DC as far more of a "destination" than Detroit, and flights would be easy. The main problem I see here is that attendance might hinge too heavily on how good Maryland is, as a lot of the classically passionate Big Ten basketball fan bases are in the Midwest and either (A) do not have that many alumni in the metro or (B) force their fans to pay for an expensive trip.

New York: I know people got upset about the BTT in the Big Apple, but as someone who went to NYC for the first time last fall and stayed in Chelsea (i.e., not far from MSG) ... come on, this is a great host site occasionally. NYC is the biggest destination in Big Ten Country, it is extremely easy to travel to, it provides incredible exposure in an iconic arena and it has a TON of Big Ten alumni. On that last note, 12 Big Ten schools have at least 5,000 alumni, 9 schools have at least 10,000 and 4 schools have over 20,000. Rutgers' newly energized fan base (157,458 alumni in the area) would definitely show up, but even if they lost early ... you have 28,269 Michigan grads, 24,371 from Maryland, 14,992 from Wisconsin, 13,145 from Indiana, etc. I wouldn't want NYC to be the location TOO often, but if this thing is going to rotate outside of the traditional two sites of Chicago and Indy ... this is the most logical spot.

Chicago: Every fiber of my being wants to put Chicago at #1, but the area around the UC just simply isn't great ... and that's the ONLY thing holding Chicago back. Chicago has over 370,000 Big Ten alumni, and 7 schools have over 15,000. Even if Illinois loses early (and its 118,349 alumni in the area stay away), you have basketball-crazy fan bases ready to gobble up those tickets - Purdue at 38,207, Indiana at 35,539, Wisconsin at 28,168, Iowa at 25,652, MSU at 19,659, Michigan at 19,901, etc. On top of that, it is an incredibly easy drive for fan bases of Wisconsin, Purdue, Indiana, MSU, Michigan and Iowa, and Chicago is one of the easiest flights to book in the nation. The ONLY reason Indy will finish ahead here is the absolutely amazing job the city has done with its downtown.

Indianapolis: This is, sadly, the best spot for the BTT. While it has fewer Big Ten alumni than Chicago, NYC, Minneapolis, DC, Detroit, Columbus and Philadelphia, it has a lot for its relatively small size, and it truly embraces the event unlike the other cities listed above. Indiana (54,017) and Purdue (44,738) are the only schools with sizable alumni bases in the area, but it is a super easy drive for Illinois fans, OSU fans, MSU fans and Michigan fans. Again, though, the real selling point for Indy is its ability AS A HOST and the niceness of Downtown Indianapolis - things that are hard to quantify. The one caveat for Indianapolis is that attendance will likely hinge on Indiana, Illinois and Purdue being good/still in the tournament.

In summary, if you don't want to read all of my rambling, the BTT should really rotate between Chicago, Indy and an East Coast location, IMO; with our additions out east, the latter seems only fair, not to mention a great marketing opportunity. However, considering you can drive from DC to NYC in about the same time it takes to get from Iowa City to Chicago ... I would say axe DC and make Madison Square Garden the only location out there. If it were up to me, the sites would go like this:

2021-22: Indianapolis
2022-23: Chicago
2023-24: New York
2024-25: Indianapolis
2025-26: Chicago
2026-27: New York

And repeat.
Chicago and New York have the added benefit of easy public transit, Chicago the bigger bump since both airports have a connecting L train that picks you up in the airport and takes you downtown cheap. West Loop in Chicago, while not in spitting distance of the UC is within a 10 min walk and loaded with bars and restaurants, not including the brewery district just north of the UC to meet your beer needs. All of that being said, Indy is still the best strictly because it somehow just feels more like college basketball country to me.
 
#71      
I am planning on comparing BTT site possibilities a bit more in my free time, but I thought I would start with a kind of interesting post about this. :) Of all of the metros in the Big Ten footprint, these are the "major metros" that have at least a very significant suburban population within a Big Ten state, with the exception of Louisville, KY-IN due to it literally having a major college team located in that city and an SEC school that takes up the vast majority of the remaining fan base (in order of population):

New York, NY-NJ-PA: 20.14 million
Chicago, IL-IN-WI: 9.62 million
Washington, DC-MD-VA-WV: 6.39 million
Philadelphia, PA-NJ: 6.25 million
Detroit, MI: 4.39 million
Minneapolis, MN-WI: 3.69 million
Baltimore, MD: 2.84 million
St. Louis, MO-IL: 2.82 million
Pittsburgh, PA-WV: 2.37 million
Cincinnati, OH-IN: 2.26 million
Columbus, OH: 2.14 million
Indianapolis, IN: 2.11 million
Cleveland, OH: 2.09 million
Milwaukee, WI: 1.57 million
Omaha, NE-IA: 967,604
Des Moines, IA: 709,466

Given their outlier status geographically and significantly smaller populations, I would argue Omaha and Des Moines get the axe right away, lol. Next, I used LinkedIn profiles to look at which of the remaining metros had the most Big Ten alumni (note, not everyone has a LinkedIn profile, so these numbers would obviously be bigger in reality ... but it's a nice estimate):

Chicago, IL-IN-WI: 371,557
New York, NY-NJ-PA: 351,053
Minneapolis, MN-WI: 237,022
Washington, DC-MD-VA-WV: 229,729
Detroit, MI: 213,548
Columbus, OH: 160,108
Philadelphia, PA-NJ: 145,311
Indianapolis, IN: 111,854
Baltimore, MD: 71,203
Pittsburgh, PA-WV: 50,613
Milwaukee, WI: 45,378
Cleveland, OH: 44,412
Cincinnati, OH-IN: 35,982
St. Louis, MO-IL: 25,206

Given the low Big Ten alumni, the fact that 30% come from Illinois alone and its association with the MVC ... St. Louis gets the boot, as well. Additionally, I think Cincinnati should be eliminated, given OSU contributes 44% of the B1G alumni, it doesn't have a GREAT arena and it is definitely going to soon be a Big XII city, IMO, with Cincinnati joining. So, next I wanted to see which metros only had a lot of B1G alumni due to one school. These metros were totally dominated by one school (at least 65%), and thus strictly from an "alumni perspective," they are eliminated from my ideal locations:

Columbus, OH: 91% Ohio State, leaving 15,047 for the other 13 schools
Minneapolis, MN-WI: 78% Minnesota, leaving 52,445 for the other 13 schools
Pittsburgh, PA-WV: 73% Penn State, leaving 13,576 for the other 13 schools
Baltimore, MD: 67% Maryland, leaving 57,837 for the other 13 schools

Even though it didn't make the cutoff of 65%, I also see Philadelphia (60% PSU) as problematic, given PSU fans are incredibly apathetic about basketball, it seems. Additionally, even though Milwaukee is within a short driving distance for a massive concentration of Illinois fans and a decent enough drive for the Michigan schools, its 64% concentration of Wisconsin alumni is giving it the boot for the most ideal locations. Cleveland also gets the boot for being 63% OSU, not that central and not that easy for air travel. So, that leaves us with Chicago, Indianapolis, New York, DC and Detroit. As you begin to dissect these options, it is easy to see why the BTT has been hosted where it has over the years ... these are in opposite/"count down" order of how much I think they make sense:

Detroit: In many ways, Detroit actually seems like an underrated contender. It has almost 213k Big Ten alumni, with two schools (Michigan at 99,381 and MSU at 88,591) having massive alumni bases, not to mention passionate fan bases that would show up. It's a large metro area with plenty of direct flights, and it has a great arena for hosting. However, no other school has more than 3,000 alumni besides OSU (3,878), and it is a pretty long drive for all other fan bases besides MAYBE Indiana/Purdue fans living in Northern Indiana. Additionally, while I am sure it is improving ... Downtown Detroit frankly does not hold a candle to its most similar competitor here, Indianapolis.

Washington, DC: While many will think of this as a less-than-ideal location, DC actually has a ton of Big Ten alumni ... 56% are from Maryland, but there are still 11 Big Ten schools with over 5,000, and 2 others (Michigan at 12,252 and PSU at 26,989) with over 10,000. Additionally, many see DC as far more of a "destination" than Detroit, and flights would be easy. The main problem I see here is that attendance might hinge too heavily on how good Maryland is, as a lot of the classically passionate Big Ten basketball fan bases are in the Midwest and either (A) do not have that many alumni in the metro or (B) force their fans to pay for an expensive trip.

New York: I know people got upset about the BTT in the Big Apple, but as someone who went to NYC for the first time last fall and stayed in Chelsea (i.e., not far from MSG) ... come on, this is a great host site occasionally. NYC is the biggest destination in Big Ten Country, it is extremely easy to travel to, it provides incredible exposure in an iconic arena and it has a TON of Big Ten alumni. On that last note, 12 Big Ten schools have at least 5,000 alumni, 9 schools have at least 10,000 and 4 schools have over 20,000. Rutgers' newly energized fan base (157,458 alumni in the area) would definitely show up, but even if they lost early ... you have 28,269 Michigan grads, 24,371 from Maryland, 14,992 from Wisconsin, 13,145 from Indiana, etc. I wouldn't want NYC to be the location TOO often, but if this thing is going to rotate outside of the traditional two sites of Chicago and Indy ... this is the most logical spot.

Chicago: Every fiber of my being wants to put Chicago at #1, but the area around the UC just simply isn't great ... and that's the ONLY thing holding Chicago back. Chicago has over 370,000 Big Ten alumni, and 7 schools have over 15,000. Even if Illinois loses early (and its 118,349 alumni in the area stay away), you have basketball-crazy fan bases ready to gobble up those tickets - Purdue at 38,207, Indiana at 35,539, Wisconsin at 28,168, Iowa at 25,652, MSU at 19,659, Michigan at 19,901, etc. On top of that, it is an incredibly easy drive for fan bases of Wisconsin, Purdue, Indiana, MSU, Michigan and Iowa, and Chicago is one of the easiest flights to book in the nation. The ONLY reason Indy will finish ahead here is the absolutely amazing job the city has done with its downtown.

Indianapolis: This is, sadly, the best spot for the BTT. While it has fewer Big Ten alumni than Chicago, NYC, Minneapolis, DC, Detroit, Columbus and Philadelphia, it has a lot for its relatively small size, and it truly embraces the event unlike the other cities listed above. Indiana (54,017) and Purdue (44,738) are the only schools with sizable alumni bases in the area, but it is a super easy drive for Illinois fans, OSU fans, MSU fans and Michigan fans. Again, though, the real selling point for Indy is its ability AS A HOST and the niceness of Downtown Indianapolis - things that are hard to quantify. The one caveat for Indianapolis is that attendance will likely hinge on Indiana, Illinois and Purdue being good/still in the tournament.

In summary, if you don't want to read all of my rambling, the BTT should really rotate between Chicago, Indy and an East Coast location, IMO; with our additions out east, the latter seems only fair, not to mention a great marketing opportunity. However, considering you can drive from DC to NYC in about the same time it takes to get from Iowa City to Chicago ... I would say axe DC and make Madison Square Garden the only location out there. If it were up to me, the sites would go like this:

2021-22: Indianapolis
2022-23: Chicago
2023-24: New York
2024-25: Indianapolis
2025-26: Chicago
2026-27: New York

And repeat.
Great work.

With your numbers Chicago still wins easily in my opinion. The area immediately around UC may not be the best, but there are some great spots very, very close by. I would put the alumni base numbers and ease of travel over the adjacent neighborhood. Also it doesn’t hurt that BTN is just few blocks away.
 
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New York: I know people got upset about the BTT in the Big Apple, but as someone who went to NYC for the first time last fall and stayed in Chelsea (i.e., not far from MSG) ... come on, this is a great host site occasionally. NYC is the biggest destination in Big Ten Country, it is extremely easy to travel to, it provides incredible exposure in an iconic arena and it has a TON of Big Ten alumni. On that last note, 12 Big Ten schools have at least 5,000 alumni, 9 schools have at least 10,000 and 4 schools have over 20,000. Rutgers' newly energized fan base (157,458 alumni in the area) would definitely show up, but even if they lost early ... you have 28,269 Michigan grads, 24,371 from Maryland, 14,992 from Wisconsin, 13,145 from Indiana, etc. I wouldn't want NYC to be the location TOO often, but if this thing is going to rotate outside of the traditional two sites of Chicago and Indy ... this is the most logical spot.
MSG is booked for the Big East tournament every year. Didn't the Big10 have to move their schedule up by a week the year we played there? This would seem to rule out MSG.
 
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Tokyo would be another great city for the tourney. There's likely not a lot of college basketball fans, let alone B1G fans, but I just want another reason to visit Tokyo lol.
Like I said, Orlando would be great! Great weather... 50 miles from where I live.... neutral site.. where the Clark boys play.... Frazier can serve as host in his home state... Plenty of recruits here.
 
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Like I said, Orlando would be great! Great weather... 50 miles from where I live.... neutral site.. where the Clark boys play.... Frazier can serve as host in his home state... Plenty of recruits here.

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