HL TOURNEY MOVING TO INDY

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Re: HL TOURNEY MOVING TO INDY

Postby Commissioner » Fri Jan 25, 2019 9:55 pm

Tacitus651 wrote:I watch a lot of college ball on tv and many conferences have plenty of empty seats. This isn’t unique to HL. Even what many on this board consider very good conferences, the kind we dream of joining, have some very low attendance games in their tourneys.

I think Indy is great and the venue is great. I still worry about the Monday - Tuesday thing though. If the semi finals and finals were Saturday - Sunday and I found out earlier that week that my team was going, I’d almost certainly book an impromptu trip and go spend a weekend in Indy. But with the Monday - Tuesday format I’d still be unlikely to go (and I’m someone who watches numerous HL games on TV every week). People have work obligations, families, etc.

The Horizon's average attendance for conference tournament games last year was 14th of 32 conferences.

College hoops attendance has been dropping for a while. 20 of 32 conferences saw a decline in average attendance last year. The drop is especially strong in the mid majors. This is being masked because the high majors are building bigger, fancier arenas and packing them in, and because more games are played. But for the bottom 300 or so teams, things are tough.

Here are average home attendance figures for the HL (MCC) teams 25 years ago, vs. today. Remember, 25 years ago most our conference mates had just come over from the Mid-Continent Conference (now the Summit).
Detroit: 3900 ... 1840
Cleveland State: 3386 ... 1053
Green Bay: 5267 ... 1914
UIC: 3076 ... 1982
Milwaukee: 2014 ... 1334
Wright State: 6575 ... 3425
Youngstown St: 1377 ... 2210

We think of Wright State as still drawing well, but they're down almost 50%.

From 1991 through 1996, Evansville averaged over 10,000 fans per game every year. In 1994 our brief MCC conference mate Duquesne, averaged over 4000; last year, playing in the A10, they averaged 1813. Another old conference mate, Oral Roberts, went from 4350 in 25 years ago to 2411 last year. St. Louis left us for the Atlantic 10. They still draw well, right? Well, yes, in a way--6235 per game last year. But that's down from over 13,000 per game in 1994. Even Marquette averaged more than 2000 fewer per game last year than in 1994. Former MCC member, now A10 member LaSalle down from 2732 to 1911.

Anyway, Tacitus is right on another thing. If the league wants good attendance, the Tuesday night final has to go, ESPN or no. You're asking most fans to take two days off work on short notice, just for the final game (forget anything other tournament games). That's tough to do.
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Re: HL TOURNEY MOVING TO INDY

Postby Rogobob77 » Fri Jan 25, 2019 10:23 pm

Tony Paul article from the Detroit News:

“Motor City 'Sadness': Horizon League pulls plug on hoops tourneys in Detroit”

https://www.detroitnews.com/story/sport ... 678057002/
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Re: HL TOURNEY MOVING TO INDY

Postby NC Titan » Sat Jan 26, 2019 1:57 am

Commissioner wrote:From 1991 through 1996, Evansville averaged over 10,000 fans per game every year. In 1994 our brief MCC conference mate Duquesne, averaged over 4000; last year, playing in the A10, they averaged 1813. Another old conference mate, Oral Roberts, went from 4350 in 25 years ago to 2411 last year. St. Louis left us for the Atlantic 10. They still draw well, right? Well, yes, in a way--6235 per game last year. But that's down from over 13,000 per game in 1994. Even Marquette averaged more than 2000 fewer per game last year than in 1994. Former MCC member, now A10 member LaSalle down from 2732 to 1911.


Too many games on TV nowadays.
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Re: HL TOURNEY MOVING TO INDY

Postby ptctitan » Sat Jan 26, 2019 10:15 am

Commissioner said:

Anyway, Tacitus is right on another thing. If the league wants good attendance, the Tuesday night final has to go, ESPN or no. You're asking most fans to take two days off work on short notice, just for the final game (forget anything other tournament games). That's tough to do.


The HL likely makes more money from the Tuesday night TV on the main ESPN network than it would make off of putting 10,000 fans in the stands. Therefore, downsizing to a 6800 seat arena makes sense.

Basically, from 2020 to 2022, the HL Tourney will be in Indiana's version of the Cow Palace. Lower cost. Could be half-full for the championship game. No airfare expense for the HL central committee staff. Le Crone won't get lost driving home after the games. Relatively short drives from Chicago, Dayton and Northern Kentucky.
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Re: HL TOURNEY MOVING TO INDY

Postby Tacitus651 » Sat Jan 26, 2019 10:58 am

Hard to argue with anything you said, PTC. I think it’s all true and yet still the best option for the league.

What’s the best possible scenario for the league with this new agreement? Presumably, it’s NKU or WSU playing IUPUI in the championship game (on a Tuesday night). Does that get 7,000 to sell out Farmer’s. I honestly don’t think so, unless both schools subsidize and bus a couple thousand students each. Not to say you need to sell out games for it to be successful, but thinking about it this way shows you that having this tourney at LCA or anything comparable is rather silly.

It sucks that ESPN dictates this and serious fans often can’t go to the games. One thing to think about, being on ESPN or ESPN2 becomes less relevant every passing year. With the way the technology and streaming options are changing, the idea of one main “ESPN” channel might be a remnant of the past by the time this contract expires.
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Re: HL TOURNEY MOVING TO INDY

Postby Commissioner » Sat Jan 26, 2019 11:25 am

Does the league get any money from ESPN for the title game? I'm not sure we do. Even if we do, is it worth the long-term fan hit?

When the tournament was on campus sites, it probably made sense. But if you want a central location to be successful in a league like the Horizon, you've got to play the final on a weekend. Get all 10 teams back in the tournanment. First round games (7-10 finishers) on campus on Mon/Tues; quarters/semis/finals on Fri/Sat/Sun.
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Re: HL TOURNEY MOVING TO INDY

Postby Tacitus651 » Sat Jan 26, 2019 11:31 am

Can’t help wonder, what’s the worst combination for a championship game under the new agreement? I’d say it’s Detroit Mercy v. UW-Green Bay. The two smallest schools in terms of student body/alumni base, both rather far away from Indy. The Tuesday format making it tough for people with work commitments to make it. I could see a game like that having under 2,000.
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Re: HL TOURNEY MOVING TO INDY

Postby upbasketballfan » Sat Jan 26, 2019 11:38 am

ptctitan wrote:Commissioner said:

Anyway, Tacitus is right on another thing. If the league wants good attendance, the Tuesday night final has to go, ESPN or no. You're asking most fans to take two days off work on short notice, just for the final game (forget anything other tournament games). That's tough to do.


The HL likely makes more money from the Tuesday night TV on the main ESPN network than it would make off of putting 10,000 fans in the stands. Therefore, downsizing to a 6800 seat arena makes sense.

Basically, from 2020 to 2022, the HL Tourney will be in Indiana's version of the Cow Palace. Lower cost. Could be half-full for the championship game. No airfare expense for the HL central committee staff. Le Crone won't get lost driving home after the games. Relatively short drives from Chicago, Dayton and Northern Kentucky.


The floor is the home court for IUPUI. If a team is to have an advantage in the tourney it should be if they are the regular season champs not that they have a relationship with LaCrone or so that it is convenient for Lacrone. I find it hard to think the HL couldn't find a neutral site. One year ago we didn't have a member in Indiana but the HL headquarters stayed there. Now in one year we have a team and they have homecourt advantage to go to the NCAA's. Sounds like a gift in more ways than recruiting. WE NEED OUT OF THIS GARBAGE LEAGUE AND THE REMAINING MEMBERS SHOULD BROOM LaCrone!!!!
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Re: HL TOURNEY MOVING TO INDY

Postby Big DWSU » Sat Jan 26, 2019 8:19 pm

Commissioner wrote:College hoops attendance has been dropping for a while. 20 of 32 conferences saw a decline in average attendance last year. The drop is especially strong in the mid majors. This is being masked because the high majors are building bigger, fancier arenas and packing them in, and because more games are played. But for the bottom 300 or so teams, things are tough.


Attendance has steadily been dropping because more games are available on TV or live on the internet.

Commissioner wrote:Does the league get any money from ESPN for the title game?


The HL doesn't get anything for any of the games that are played on ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, ESPN3, or ESPN+. We gave away our rights for the exposure. LeCrone is a fucking idiot.
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Re: HL TOURNEY MOVING TO INDY

Postby ptctitan » Sat Jan 26, 2019 10:51 pm

HL and its member schools do get money from ESPN for the few games that are telecast on the ESPN networks. It's not a lot. It includes the tournament championship game. I read that each school gets about $300K per year from the deal.

The HL does not get money from ESPN for any games telecast on ESPN+. And, in fact, each school has to pay the cost of producing and televising each game. But they can sell advertising time and even partner with a local television broadcaster in order to reduce costs. The net effect is that a lot of the money received by the HL from ESPN and sent to its members for the TV contract gets funneled back to ESPN for the games on ESPN+. But that money comes from the individual schools' budgets - not the HL. The schools choose to bear these costs for their own marketing and recruiting reasons.

The small amount of money received from ESPN is still more than the HL would have netted selling 5,000 more tickets at LCA for $10-15 each less the portion of those sales that go to the arena.
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Re: HL TOURNEY MOVING TO INDY

Postby TitanVoiceofReason » Wed Feb 13, 2019 12:19 pm

Rogobob77 wrote:For those familiar with Indy, is the Coliseum in or near downtown, is it in walking distance of hotels and bars?


The following comment appeared on the Green Bay message board in the Conference Tournament Future section. I posted the comment here for future reference.


post by indtjb on February 2, 2019
In earlier comments in this thread, someone mentioned that the area around the IN State Fairgrounds doesn’t have much in the vicinity to easily walk to. That is true. The good news however is that Indianapolis is finishing up its first Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) corridor. This first of three lines - the Red Line - will link the fairgrounds Coliseum with the heart of downtown Indianapolis with this new frequent, extended hours service. New electric, double length buses will have a stop within a couple of blocks of the Coliseum with both south bound and northbound service. The buses will arrive every 10 - 12 minutes and will run from 5:00 am until 1:00 am every day. It’s about 4 miles from the State Fairgrounds to downtown so that should be about a 15 minute ride. The Red Line also travels north to the Broad Ripple neighborhood which is about 2 1/2 miles north of the fairgrounds. It has lots of restaurants, bars, stores, clubs, etc. Downtown has more than anyone could do in a couple of days. 200+ restaurants, several dozen bars / nightclubs/ comedy clubs etc. Also a handful of museums, numerous theaters, beautiful monuments, memorials and fountains, other major sporting venues, several parks, the canal district, and three or four additional entertainment districts. The Mass Ave District is in the NE part of downtown. It is lined with restaurants, bars, shopping, theaters & live music venues. The Wholesale District is the older “warehouse” district with probably the largest amount of clubs, theaters, restaurants, shopping, and dozens of hotels - huge as well as small. It is in the south-central part of the core of downtown. The Southeast corner of downtown has the “Fletcher Place” neighborhood and the “Fountain Square” District. Again - many more restaurants, bars, art galleries, live music venues, brew pubs, etc. throughout these two areas. The Red Line serves all of these areas very conveniently with stops in on very close to each area. It costs $1.75 for a ride and you can get free transfers to other buses within 2 hours of debarking from a bus. I’d suggest staying at one of the nearly 9,000 hotel rooms downtown and then taking the Red Line to and from the Coliseum. Indy is a great host city and we will be looking forward to hosting as many fans as possible for the Horizon League semifinals and finals. Hopefully Green Bay will make the “Top Four” and be playing. No matter who makes it here next year - it will be a great tourney and a fantastic time. We often get lucky and have temps in the 50’s and 60’s in early March - so that could be a plus. Although it was -10 here a few days ago, it is supposed to be in the 50’s and low 60’s over the next several days here in the beginning of February. Looking forward to March of 2020!
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Re: HL TOURNEY MOVING TO INDY

Postby Tacitus651 » Wed Feb 13, 2019 12:26 pm

Good info. As pissed as I am at HL, I still think Indy was the best choice and I think Farmers is fine. The truth is, if IUPUI turns this into too much of a good thing and has too many tourney upsets, the other 9 ADs will revolt and force the league to go somewhere else for the next contract.

Great city, and good venue as far as capacity and what it must cost.
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Re: HL TOURNEY MOVING TO INDY

Postby upbasketballfan » Wed Feb 13, 2019 12:39 pm

TitanVoiceofReason wrote: by TitanVoiceofReason » Wed Feb 13, 2019 10:19 am
TitanVoiceofReason wrote:
Rogobob77 wrote:For those familiar with Indy, is the Coliseum in or near downtown, is it in walking distance of hotels and bars?


The following comment appeared on the Green Bay message board in the Conference Tournament Future section. I posted the comment here for future reference.


post by indtjb on February 2, 2019
In earlier comments in this thread, someone mentioned that the area around the IN State Fairgrounds doesn’t have much in the vicinity to easily walk to. That is true. The good news however is that Indianapolis is finishing up its first Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) corridor. This first of three lines - the Red Line - will link the fairgrounds Coliseum with the heart of downtown Indianapolis with this new frequent, extended hours service. New electric, double length buses will have a stop within a couple of blocks of the Coliseum with both south bound and northbound service. The buses will arrive every 10 - 12 minutes and will run from 5:00 am until 1:00 am every day. It’s about 4 miles from the State Fairgrounds to downtown so that should be about a 15 minute ride. The Red Line also travels north to the Broad Ripple neighborhood which is about 2 1/2 miles north of the fairgrounds. It has lots of restaurants, bars, stores, clubs, etc. Downtown has more than anyone could do in a couple of days. 200+ restaurants, several dozen bars / nightclubs/ comedy clubs etc. Also a handful of museums, numerous theaters, beautiful monuments, memorials and fountains, other major sporting venues, several parks, the canal district, and three or four additional entertainment districts. The Mass Ave District is in the NE part of downtown. It is lined with restaurants, bars, shopping, theaters & live music venues. The Wholesale District is the older “warehouse” district with probably the largest amount of clubs, theaters, restaurants, shopping, and dozens of hotels - huge as well as small. It is in the south-central part of the core of downtown. The Southeast corner of downtown has the “Fletcher Place” neighborhood and the “Fountain Square” District. Again - many more restaurants, bars, art galleries, live music venues, brew pubs, etc. throughout these two areas. The Red Line serves all of these areas very conveniently with stops in on very close to each area. It costs $1.75 for a ride and you can get free transfers to other buses within 2 hours of debarking from a bus. I’d suggest staying at one of the nearly 9,000 hotel rooms downtown and then taking the Red Line to and from the Coliseum. Indy is a great host city and we will be looking forward to hosting as many fans as possible for the Horizon League semifinals and finals. Hopefully Green Bay will make the “Top Four” and be playing. No matter who makes it here next year - it will be a great tourney and a fantastic time. We often get lucky and have temps in the 50’s and 60’s in early March - so that could be a plus. Although it was -10 here a few days ago, it is supposed to be in the 50’s and low 60’s over the next several days here in the beginning of February. Looking forward to March of 2020!


I think we are missing the point here. The purpose of a tourney is to make sure we are sending our best representative to the big dance. Not the league champion but the best team at the end of the season. When the tourney was held at the regular season champions home court it was better than giving IUPUI a home advantage every year. I will make it down for the tourney this year if Detroit is in it or I guess I will never attend another Horizon tourney win or lose. Hopefully we will not be in the Horizon in the near future.
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Re: HL TOURNEY MOVING TO INDY

Postby upbasketballfan » Wed Feb 13, 2019 12:43 pm

Tacitus651 wrote:Good info. As pissed as I am at HL, I still think Indy was the best choice and I think Farmers is fine. The truth is, if IUPUI turns this into too much of a good thing and has too many tourney upsets, the other 9 ADs will revolt and force the league to go somewhere else for the next contract.

Great city, and good venue as far as capacity and what it must cost.


I would feel better about this if it was at Hinkle or another neutral venue. Why not Chicago?
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Re: HL TOURNEY MOVING TO INDY

Postby Tacitus651 » Wed Feb 13, 2019 12:48 pm

What would you propose, UP? Having the tourney in an NBA arena with 90% of the seats empty and making the few fans who show up pay higher prices? Or, going to a small arena in a place like Grand Rapids or Ft. Wayne with no HL team in town and sacrificing any local fans to fill some seats? Or, I suppose having it at a smaller venue but still near a HL team. The Allstate arena meets that definition but it’s not ideal for many reasons. I get that our ideal situation would be keeping it at LCA, us being in the final game, and attracting 20,000 fans. But that’s not reality.
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Re: HL TOURNEY MOVING TO INDY

Postby Tacitus651 » Wed Feb 13, 2019 12:54 pm

Chicago? I don’t know, I wasn’t on the committee but my guess regarding Allstate or other arenas would be:

Not centrally located at all. Yes, it’s close for UIC, and I’m sure GB and UWM wouldn’t mind, but it’s still on the western edge of the conference.

Allstate is a dump. Just being honest. Even with the renovation, it’s a dump and located near nothing.

Generally, dealing with people in Chicago is a pain in the butt. I can say this because I’m from there. People think Chicago is the best and they think they’re offering you the chance to be special and pay their Amusement Taxes, parking fees, sales taxes, etc. I’m honestly not trying to bring politics to this board, but I can see how dealing with people in Indy for a bid on something like this is MUCH better than talking to people in the Chicago area.
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Re: HL TOURNEY MOVING TO INDY

Postby Rogobob77 » Thu Feb 14, 2019 3:53 pm

FWIW, Northern Kentucky athletics sent a letter to its fans earlier this week saying that they were disappointed and frustrated in the selection process that ultimately resulted in IUPUI getting the bid to host the Horizon League tournament on its home court. NKU contends it did not get a fair opportunity to submit a proposal that would have included staging the tournament at its own BB&T arena.
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Re: HL TOURNEY MOVING TO INDY

Postby Rogobob77 » Wed Feb 27, 2019 3:04 pm

Heard today that the runner-up to host the Horizon tournament for the next three years was the city of Ft. Wayne. Detroit Mercy was supportive of Indianapolis as they felt it was clear best choice from available options. Next year could return to a format where all ten league teams make the field, this should be determined in the next month or so.
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Re: HL TOURNEY MOVING TO INDY

Postby Tacitus651 » Sun Mar 17, 2019 12:45 pm

Watching Harvard (1) have to play Yale (2) on Yale’s home court for the Ivy League championship is just brutal. The arena is 95% Yale fans and it's loud as hell.
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Re: HL TOURNEY MOVING TO INDY

Postby Commissioner » Sun Mar 17, 2019 6:12 pm

Tacitus651 wrote:Watching Harvard (1) have to play Yale (2) on Yale’s home court for the Ivy League championship is just brutal. The arena is 95% Yale fans and it's loud as hell.

And Yale got 30 free throws.

But I don't think that IUPUI/Titan final will engender quite as much home crowd enthusiasm.
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