With three major conference basketball tournaments starting today, I thought it would be interesting to see how far some fans, and players, have to travel for their respective tournaments.
The Pac-12, Big Ten, and ACC conferences all have some long roads ahead of them...particularly for fans.
The Pac-12 conference tournament has been held in Las Vegas, like this year, the past few years, so they’re a bit of an outlier, but nonetheless their fans have to travel a ridiculous amount of miles depending on if they fly or drive. The process by which I came up with the following numbers is quite simple. I plugged in each address from each Pac-12 school and found the distance from campus to the site of the conference tourney. Here’s what I found:
Average distance from campus to T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas:
616.25 miles away...that’s roughly an 11-hour drive.
USC - 268 miles away.
547 miles away.
University of Washington - 1,125 miles away.
The Pac-12 may have a lot of ground to cover when traveling to the tournament, but at least it’s centrally located within the conferences schools...*cough-cough*Big Ten Commissioner Jim Delaney*cough-cough*. However, flights out west to Las Vegas are relatively cheap and are usually close to each campus.
The ACC in recent years has played at venues such as the Greensboro Coliseum in North Carolina, the Phillips Arena in Atlanta, and most recently the beloved Verizon Center in Washington D.C. This year, however, they are playing at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. Why? I have absolutely no clue. I broke down the numbers anyways.
Average distance from campus to the Barclays Center in Brooklyn:
578.5 miles away...roughly a 9-hour drive.
Boston College - 214 miles away.
539 miles away.
Miami - 1,284 miles away.
The ACC decided to join the Big Ten and make their fans travel incredibly far for no reason at all. But they did get smart again and will return to North Carolina in 2019.
Now the Big Ten. Probably...actually no...THE worst location of the three major conferences highlighted in this article. There are 2 teams from the Big Ten near the east coast. One being Maryland and the other...Rutger...
The Big Ten conference tournament is being held in Washington D.C. this year at the Verizon Center. Maryland loves it. They’re only 11.6 miles away. Everyone else? Awful.
Average distance from campus to the Verizon Center in D.C.:
623.2 miles away...roughly an 11-hour drive (including Maryland)
670 miles away not including Maryland.
Maryland - 11.6 miles away.
635.5 miles away
Nebraska - 1,210 miles away.
For east coasters, this location is great. For the rest of the Big Ten, who mostly reside in the Midwest, they’re having to fork over some hefty travel expenses to see their favorite teams. Next the year the Big Ten is going to go even farther away to Madison Square Garden in New York City. They also have to play a week earlier since the Big East and ACC will also be playing their conference tournaments there. That means some teams in the Big Ten will have a week and a half of rest before playing in the NCAA tournament.