Sioux Falls, SD
Those who organize the Summit League Tournament are already formulating their game plan for next year's event.
The roar of the crowd proved it wasn't just your average basketball game, or tournament for that matter. The teams were playing for a place on the largest stage for college basketball. For those behind the scenes at the Summit Tournament, it's about showcasing quality games at a high quality location.
"It was a home run, there's no doubt about that. Everything aligned and caused it to be great crowds and great enthusiasm. And I think it sparks the interest for future years too. So, we were really excited," Mike Sullivan said.
Sullivan is the executive director of the Sioux Falls Sports Authority. He says this year's ticket sales and enthusiasm surrounding the tournament are both reason to celebrate. However, the authority and the league won't waste much time before planning next year's event.
"You want to jump in right away when things are fresh in your mind and do your follow up meetings, and kind of fix the little things that went off. Some of them we can't fix, like the alarm system," Sullivan said.
The fire alarms went off during the men's championship game. Organizers quickly learned there was no threat and the game continued on. Planners are also taking information from all of the teams involved. They say there is really only one complaint about the tournament calling Sioux Falls home.
"You always are going to hear the home-court advantage for State, or possibly next year the University of South Dakota. So, the Dakota schools have an advantage. But wherever you go, someone is going to have an advantage," Sullivan said.
And, with the success of this year's tournament, another advantage appears to be for the City of Sioux Falls to keep the tournament coming back even after the current contract is up.
Sullivan points out that the home-court advantage argument doesn't hold much water, because the SDSU men were seeded number two, and were the top remaining team in the tournament when number one Oral Roberts was knocked out in the second round.
Tickets for the 2013 tournament have been on sale since last weekend. More than 2,000 tickets have been sold.