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Report: Big Ten Exploring Moving 2021 Tournament to Indianapolis from Chicago

NCAA Basketball: Big Ten Tournament Thomas J. Russo-USA TODAY Sports

CBS’s Jon Rothstein has reported that the Big Ten is actively discussing moving the 2021 men’s basketball Big Ten Tournament to Indianapolis this year rather than Chicago where it is currently scheduled to be played.

Under the current host contract schedules, the Big Ten Tournament for men’s basketball is scheduled to take place in Chicago at the United Center this year. Starting with the 2019 tournament, the annual event returned to alternating between the United Center in Chicago in odd years and Banker’s Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis in even years through 2022. Last year the tournament in Indianapolis was cancelled after the first day’s events due to the outbreak of the novel coronavirus outbreak in the United States.

No decision has been made at this time, but Rothstein cites multiple sources that have told him the Big Ten is looking at the move seriously. The reason for it would be the looser health restrictions in place in Indiana that would allow players’ family and close friends to be able to attend the games versus the stricter policies in place in Chicago that would likely prevent that.

The decision would also impact the women’s Big Ten Tournament as it is slated to take place at Banker’s Life Fieldhouse from March 9 through March 13. The men’s is scheduled for March 10 through March 14.

This also comes following recent news announcing the NCAA is officially hosting the entire NCAA men’s basketball tournament in the state of Indiana, with most games occurring in the Indianapolis metro region.

We will be sure to update you with any updated news when it occurs on this topic.