Big Red propels Big Ten tourney to record attendance

March 12, 2012
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Big Red helped propel the Big Ten men’s basketball tournament to a new attendance record in Indianapolis.

But not the Big Red most Hoosiers would think.

The biggest factor was the addition of Nebraska, which came to the Big Ten from the Big 12 conference this year. That’s right, Nebraska.

Not that Cornhuskers hoops is a huge draw. Rather, the addition of a 12th team meant six sessions this year instead of five. Tickets are purchased and counted separately for each session.

Thursday’s session now has two sessions with two games each. Previously, Thursday had one session featuring three games.

Nevertheless, conference and local tourism officials were thrilled with attendance of 107,737, smashing last year’s 86,767 and the Big Ten tournament record in Indianapolis of 94,402 set in 2002.

Take away the 17,125 from the sixth session—the championship game—and the five session total this year was 90,612.

That’s still a strong turnout. Tournament attendance hadn’t topped 90,000 here since 2006.

This year’s per-session attendance average—17,956—was second-highest in the tournament’s history in Indianapolis. Per-session attendance in 2006 was 18,152.

But the Hoosiers resurgence—along with a strong Purdue team—should get some of the credit this year. Consider, when the Hoosiers were at their lowest in 2009, attendance was a paltry 68,098 for a per-session average of 13,620.

The predicted economic impact for the tournament was $11.2 million, based on previous years’ attendance.

Downtown merchants reported stronger sales this year during the four-day tournament, and there’s reason to believe the impact could have surpassed $12 million.

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  1. I think the poster was being sarcastic and only posting or making fun of what is usually posted on here about anything being built in BR or d'town for that matter.

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  3. So disappointed in WIBC. This is the last straw to lose a good local morning program. I used to be able to rely on WIBC to give me good local information, news, weather and traffic on my 45 minute commute.Two incidents when I needed local, accurate information regarding severe weather were the first signs I could not now rely on WIBC. I work weekend 12 hour nights for a downtown hospital. This past winter when we had the worst snowfall in my 50 years of life, I came home on a Sunday morning, went to sleep (because I was to go back in Sunday night for another 12 hour shift), and woke up around 1 p.m. to a house with no electricity. I keep an old battery powered radio around and turned on WIBC to see what was going on with the winter storm and the roads and the power outage. Sigh. Only policital stuff. Not even a break in to update on the winter storm warning. The second weather incident occurred when I was driving home during a severe thunderstorm a few months ago. I had already gotten a call from my husband that a tornado warning was just southwest of where I had been. I turned to WIBC to find out what direction the storm was headed so I could figure out a route home, only to find Rush on the air, and again, no breaking away from this stupidity to give me information. Thank God for my phone, which gave me the warning that I was driving in an area where a tornado was seen. Thanks for nothing WIBC. Good luck to you, Steve! We need more of you and not the politics of hatred that WIBC wants to shove at us. Good thing I have Satellite radio.

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