WAC: Viva Las Vegas


<a href=”http://www.lvrj.com/sports/48846187.html”>Las Vegas Review-Journal</a>

is reporting that the Western Athletic Conference basketball tournament will be heading to Vegas.

<em>The WAC, which had its tournament at the Thomas &amp; Mack Center from 1997 to 1999 when UNLV belonged in the league, will play its championship at the 8,500-seat Orleans Arena beginning in 2011. The league signed a two-year deal to play in Las Vegas, where the tournament will be on a neutral court for only the second time in its 26-year history. The Delta Center in Salt Lake City hosted the WAC tournament in 1993 and 1994.A news conference to officially announce the deal is scheduled for Wednesday at The Orleans.</em>

I applaud the WAC for looking past some of their past models of stacking the deck for its member institutions who look like they will directly benefit from hosting the tournament on their home courts. Not only does this level the playing field for home court advantage, it’s also more attractive for fans to travel with their teams (I don’t care how much New Mexico State offered to pay the WAC, nobody wants to travel to Las Cruces again to watch a tournament). Reno hasn’t been too bad, and Aggies have traveled well there before, but Las Vegas is a much better regional option, travel option, and obviously entertainment option outside of the games.

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