INDIANAPOLIS--There is both a consensus and a hope for limited fans at the 2021 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament in Indiana, according to the Indiana Sports Corp.
That, however, depends on a variety of factors.
“There is certainly consideration for having fans, but I think prudently the NCAA, the state, and the county health departments want to give time to see what the health conditions look like as we get closer,” said Ryan Vaughn, president of Indiana Sports Corp in an interview Tuesday morning with 93 WIBC’s Tony Katz and the Morning News.
Vaughn says the number of fans in attendance, if possible, would likely be limited.
“We could have the families of players, coaches, and staff. There is some discussion about a limited number of tickets for each. We know if that happens that will be great for the student-athletes that their families can be there. I expect a decision on that issue and at what capacity will probably occur sometime in February,” said Vaughn.
Vaughn says the Sports Corp. will lobby to have fans at the games.
“I’d love to do it. We’ve shown even through some of the most difficult parts of the pandemic that major events can be executed safely with fans here (in Indy). The Indy Eleven did it well. The (Indianapolis) Colts are doing it well. It’s just a matter of putting in the planning and the safety precautions to do so,” said Vaughn.
The majority of the tournament’s 67 games will take place in Indianapolis, at Lucas Oil Stadium, Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Hinkle Fieldhouse, and the Indiana Farmers Coliseum. Some games will be played at Purdue University’s Mackey Arena and Indiana University’s Simon Skojdt Assembly Hall. Ball State, Butler, the Horizon League, IU, IUPUI, and Purdue will be considered the hosts of the tournament and will lend their staff members to assist with tournament operations.
Additionally, the NCAA announced that the entire Division II tournament will be in Evansville, and Fort Wayne will host the entire D-III tournament.