WASHINGTON (CBSDC) – The Big Ten Conference announced Tuesday the Big Ten Men’s Basketball Tournament will make its east coast debut with an appearance at the Verizon Center in Washington, D.C in 2017.
As first reported by 106.7 The Fan, the 20th annual event – set for March 8 through March 12, 2014 — will follow appearances in Chicago in 2015, and Indianapolis in 2016, the cities in which the previous 17 tournament have been held.
“We’re thrilled to announce plans to host the Big Ten Men’s Basketball Tournament in Washington, D.C.,” said Big Ten commissioner James E. Delany. “We have a great amount of respect for basketball in this region of the country and are pleased that we were able to place this tournament at the Verizon Center at this first possible opportunity in March 2017.”
“We’re very excited the Big Ten Conference has selected our nation’s capital as the site for the 2017 Big Ten Men’s Basketball Tournament,” said University of Maryland director of athletics Kevin Anderson. “This is yet another example of the Big Ten’s commitment to our region and provides fans of Maryland and all conference teams on the East Coast easier access to enjoy this outstanding event.”
“We are looking forward to and are honored to host the Big Ten Tournament here in Washington, D.C. for the very first time,” said senior vice president and general manager of Verizon Center, David Touhey. “The excitement that surrounds this conference event is unparalleled and with Maryland becoming a part of the fold officially next season, the tournament is sure to have some added local flair here in the nation’s capital.”
In the history of the Big Ten Tournament, six programs – Illinois, Iowa, Michigan State, Ohio State, Purdue and Wisconsin – have won, while 10 schools have advanced to the championship game.
On Monday, the conference announced plans to participate in the Gavitt Tipoff Games – an annual early-season men’s basketball series against the Big East – named in honor of Dave Gavitt, founder of the Big East Conference.
Maryland, along with Rutgers, is set to officially join the Big Ten Conference on July 1.