Michigan State head coach Tom Izzo says he is concerned about the Big Ten Conference’s basketball tournament moving to New York in 2018 because of the possibility of waiting two weeks before playing in the NCAA Tournament.
Sports Illustrated reported last weekend that the 2018 tournament will take place at Madison Square Garden in New York City. Izzo said he is mostly concerned about scheduling.
The Big East also holds its conference tournaments at the Garden and would force the Big 10 to move its dates to early March.
"That's probably my biggest concern," Izzo told The Detroit Free Press. "Not where it is, but [the timing]. Nobody wants that much time off. It could be two weeks, because you could play [in the league tournament] and get beat on a Thursday."
Izzo is also concerned about the costs of traveling to Washington, D.C, where the 2017 tournament will be held, and New York. This year’s conference tournament will be held at the United Center in Chicago, three hours from Michigan State’s campus in East Lansing.
Izzo, in his 20th season at Michigan State, said he was concerned that players' families would have a difficult time attending games from a financial standpoint. But despite saying he understands why the conference is intent on hosting events in the East Coast, he also said he feels honoring the Big Ten's tradition is important.
From the Free Press:
"I know why the commissioner is doing it. I understand it. … They're for the reasons of why we make more money and why we have better facilities and all that stuff, so I understand some of it. I just hope we don't lose, I hope the conferences don't lose, what I think these conferences like the Big Ten that have had tradition seem to be losing a little bit."
- Scooby Axson