Ivy League Basketball Tournament Returning To The Palestra After '17 Success
The Palestra in Philadelphia "shone in hosting the inaugural Ivy League basketball tournament weekend this past March," and now the event will "return to college basketball's most historic gym" in '18, according to Jonathan Tannenwald of PHILLY.com. As with the '17 edition, the men's and women's tournaments will be "played under the same roof on the weekend of Selection Sunday." ESPN networks will "once again broadcast all of the games." The Ivy League has "made it clear that it values having the men's and women's events at the same site." Ivy League Exec Dir Robin Harris said, "That is definitely a major priority for the tournament." The Palestra also has some "clear advantages over other Ivy League venues." From a "logistical perspective, the fact that the Palestra has four locker rooms connected to the floor makes it easy to move participating teams in and out during the day." There are also "multiple usable spaces in nearby buildings, from practice courts to rooms for alumni gatherings and media." This year's semifinals, "all on one ticket, drew 6,200 fans," and the final doubleheader drew 3,833. Harris said that she "expects those numbers to grow next year" (PHILLY.com, 5/11). CBSSPORTS.com's Matt Norlander noted the Ivy League is "opting to go with a legendary venue over the home-court-advantage model to higher seeds in an effort to maximize exposure at the potential expense of not sending its best representative" (CBSSPORTS.com, 5/11).