Without a South Dakota team in the championship, men’s attendance dips at Summit League

KELOLAND.com Original

Summit League 2020 | KELOLAND News

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — For the second year in row, there won’t be any South Dakota teams in the men’s championship of the Summit League Basketball Tournament.

While that was the case in 2019, a South Dakota team has been in the championship six times since from 2009 to 2019. SDSU won it in 2012, 2013, 2016, 2017 and 2018. SDSU joined in 2007 and the University of South Dakota joined in 2011.

Keep up with action at Summit League Championships by visiting our special page.

Since 2009, there’s been five championships without a South Dakota team. In all of those years, there was a drop in attendance in the championship game. The tournament has been in Sioux Falls since 2009.

The University of North Dakota, North Dakota State University, Oral Roberts University and Purdue Fort Wayne Indiana reached the semi-finals this year.

In 2014, when North Dakota State University beat IPFW in the championship, the championship game drew 4,263 fans. The overall attendance was 20,832.

The biggest years of the men’s tournament through 2019 were 2016 and 2017. One of the 2016 quarterfinal games drew 10,306 fans, about 200 more than the championship game between SDSU and NDSU, which drew 10,188. The total tournament drew 36,661 fans.

South Dakota State University beat North Dakota State University in the 2016 championship.

The 2017 semifinal game drew 11,235 fans and the championship drew 9,441 while the total tournament drew 39,912.

SDSU beat the University of Nebraska Omaha in the 2017 championship.

Summit League men’s Championship vs. NCAA Div I conference tournaments

The Mid Eastern Conference’s members include Bethune-Cookman, Coppin State and Florida A&M in the 10-team total. The Mid-Eastern Conference men’s basketball tournament drew 39,51 fans in 2018 in five sessions, according to the NCAA.

In 2016, the West Coast League drew 37,494 fans in five sessions. The West Coast League includes Brigham Young University, Pepperdine, Gonzaga and seven other teams.

The Missiouri Valley League drew 34,810 in five sessions. The Missouri Valley league’s teams include Bradley, Drake, Illinois State and seven other teams.

The AAC drew 50,259 fans in six sessions to its conference tournament in 2018. The conference includes Wichita State, Memphis, Houston and nine other teams.

The Summit League drew 36,412 fans in 2018 in four sessions.

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