IBJNews

IU success spurs Big Ten tourney ticket sales

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

The resurgence of the Indiana University men’s basketball team is expected to help boost ticket sales at the Big Ten tournament to levels unseen in several years.

Total attendance for the four-day event that tips off at 11:30 a.m. Thursday at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in downtown Indianapolis is expected to top last year’s figure of 86,767 and could even surpass the 90,000 mark, last reached in 2006.

“When the local teams are playing well, it definitely brings an added excitement and extra demand for those tickets,” said John Dedman, spokesman for the Indiana Sports Corp., which helps organize the tournament. “There’s an excitement we haven’t seen around IU, in particular, in the last couple of years.”

The Hoosiers, a No. 5 seed, enter the tournament ranked 15th in the nation with a 24-7 record. They will play Penn State University, the No. 12 seed, in the second game on Thursday, starting 30 minutes after the first game ends.

Purdue University, the No. 6 seed, is unranked in national polls but finished with a 20-11 record. The Boilermakers will play the University of Nebraska in the fourth and final game Thursday night.

This is the first year Nebraska is competing in the tournament as the newest member of the Big Ten, which also should help push attendance higher.

The Cornhuskers won just four games this year in conference play and have an overall record of 12-17. But organizers say the team’s mere presence will boost attendance because a fourth game has been added to the first day’s schedule to accommodate 12 teams. Under the new schedule, only four teams receive a first-round bye instead of the usual five.

In past years, one ticket bought entry into all three first-round games. Now separate tickets are needed for the two afternoon games and two evening games.

Meanwhile, Indianapolis’ run of hosting both men’s and women’s Big Ten tournaments ends this year, and officials at the fieldhouse already are looking ahead to next year to fill scheduling gaps created by the losses.
 
The men’s tournament alternated between Indianapolis and Chicago beginning in 2002 before Indianapolis won the bid in 2008 to host it outright on an annual basis for five years. The women’s Big Ten tournament has been played in Indianapolis every year since it started in 1995. The women’s tournament this year ran from March 1-4 and had total attendance of 38,748.

Starting next year, both the men and women's tourneys will be played at United Center in Chicago. They will return to Indianapolis in 2014 and 2016.

Pacers Sports & Entertainment executives have submitted scheduling requests for next March to the National Basketball Association to help compensate for the loss of the tournaments.

They want the Pacers to play more home games during the beginning of the month, when the tournaments are typically here and go on the road more later in the month. Fieldhouse officials have booked a “very significant” family-type show they wouldn't reveal to occupy the facility when the Pacers are gone.

“It’s a domino situation,” said Rick Fuson, PS&E vice president and director of Bankers Life Fieldhouse. “But we ultimately hope to make [the fieldhouse] the permanent home of the Big Ten championships. It’s a great economic generator for not only here, but for the city.”

The men’s games are responsible for $11.2 million of the total $13.6 million in annual economic impact the two tournaments bring to the city, hospitality officials say.

 

ADVERTISEMENT

  • Flagship
    IU is the flagship university of this state. Anyone who thinks otherwise is kidding themselves.

Post a comment to this story

COMMENTS POLICY
We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
 
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
 
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
 
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
 
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
 

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
ADVERTISEMENT

facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
 
Subscribe to IBJ
  1. By Mr. Lee's own admission, he basically ran pro-bono ads on the billboard. Paying advertisers didn't want ads on a controversial, ugly billboard that turned off customers. At least one of Mr. Lee's free advertisers dropped out early because they found that Mr. Lee's advertising was having negative impact. So Mr. Lee is disingenous to say the city now owes him for lost revenue. Mr. Lee quickly realized his monstrosity had a dim future and is trying to get the city to bail him out. And that's why the billboard came down so quickly.

  2. Merchants Square is back. The small strip center to the south of 116th is 100% leased, McAlister’s is doing well in the outlot building. The former O’Charleys is leased but is going through permitting with the State and the town of Carmel. Mac Grill is closing all of their Indy locations (not just Merchants) and this will allow for a new restaurant concept to backfill both of their locations. As for the north side of 116th a new dinner movie theater and brewery is under construction to fill most of the vacancy left by Hobby Lobby and Old Navy.

  3. Yes it does have an ethics commission which enforce the law which prohibits 12 specific items. google it

  4. Thanks for reading and replying. If you want to see the differentiation for research, speaking and consulting, check out the spreadsheet I linked to at the bottom of the post; it is broken out exactly that way. I can only include so much detail in a blog post before it becomes something other than a blog post.

  5. 1. There is no allegation of corruption, Marty, to imply otherwise if false. 2. Is the "State Rule" a law? I suspect not. 3. Is Mr. Woodruff obligated via an employment agreement (contractual obligation) to not work with the engineering firm? 4. In many states a right to earn a living will trump non-competes and other contractual obligations, does Mr. Woodruff's personal right to earn a living trump any contractual obligations that might or might not be out there. 5. Lawyers in state government routinely go work for law firms they were formally working with in their regulatory actions. You can see a steady stream to firms like B&D from state government. It would be interesting for IBJ to do a review of current lawyers and find out how their past decisions affected the law firms clients. Since there is a buffer between regulated company and the regulator working for a law firm technically is not in violation of ethics but you have to wonder if decisions were made in favor of certain firms and quid pro quo jobs resulted. Start with the DOI in this review. Very interesting.

ADVERTISEMENT