Purdue Prepares To Host NCAA Tourney Games

Mar 16, 2021

Credit (Wikimedia Commons)

Mackey Arena will host a pair of opening round games, plus four first round games this week.

The action tips off with Wichita State against Drake at 6:30 p.m. Thursday.  Purdue’s arena was selected as one of six sites throughout Indiana hosting NCAA tournament games.

The tournament was moved to Indiana from regions around the country to limit travel during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“None of the teams are staying here locally. They are all coming back and forth from Indianapolis,” said Purdue Assistant Athletic Director for Facilities Al Capitos.

Seating capacity at the 15,000 seat Mackey Arena will be limited to 12-13%.  Capitos says general admission seats are sold out.

Fans will have to scan their own tickets, and concession stands will be cashless. 

It took several weeks of planning and preparation to put the event on.

“That goes from the graphics package that needs to go up that represents the March Madness of the NCAA to plexiglass safety systems for TV announcers,” Capitos said.

Purdue will be playing its first-round game in Indianapolis.  NCAA rules prevent host teams from playing tournament games in its own arena.