BIG 12 Basketball Tournament underway in KC

Story by Robert Hurst – Staff Reporter

The BIG 12 Basketball tournament begins this month. It is being held at the T-Mobile Center in downtown Kansas City. The 2021 tournament marks the 20th time that Kansas City will host the  Big 12 Men’s Basketball Championship —more than any other Midwest city. Last year’s tournament was non-existent due to the Covid-19 Quarantine that launched last March, the month of the tournament. 

The Big 12 Conference has announced that a limited number of tickets will be made available for the 2021 Championship, scheduled for March 10-13. Seating capacity for the basketball Championship will be reduced in accordance with guidelines from local public health officials.

Simon Murray, a senior at Lee’s Summit North, kept up with college basketball this season. Simon Murray’s reaction to last year’s postponement was utter disappointment, “Initially, when I heard of the postponement of the tournament last year, I had a feeling that the decision was coming, but I felt a large deal of disappointment for the teams in the tournament. Being an athlete myself, the hours putting into working on your game and preparing for big moments inherently create a beautiful anxiety when you finally get a chance to display your hard work; therefore, having the tournament canceled surely left an unsatisfying feeling in the hearts of the players and I understood how hard it must have been for them.” 

Murray believes the limited attendance is understandable, “I believe this was completely called for and expected this to be the case. In fact, I think that it is beneficial, in the long run, to the health and safety of everyone attending the tournament games.”

Murray believes the safety protocols won’t hinder him from attending, “through an earlier planning schedule, I think the consistency of the safety protocols will not hinder me from watching the games live and rather help me to stay safe while at the event.” Murray will be rooting for Kansas State since his older brother is a student there.

Kelly Lepert, a science teacher at LSN, also keeps up with college basketball. With this tournament taking place this month of March, Lepert sees this as a sign of returning to life before the pandemic, “I sincerely hope people attending the tournament is a sign life is returning to normal.”

Lepert is rooting in an interesting way for the BIG12 tournament, “I am rooting for anyone playing against KU!” The NCAA Men’s Basketball tournament or famously known as, March Madness, is the next step for this season. Lepert believes March Madness must happen, “I absolutely see March madness happening this season.  It’s a huge source of income for universities so I think they will do as much as possible to continue it.”

Check out the BIG 12 Men’s Basketball tournament on your local or national TV stations.