The Big Sky Conference announced via Twitter that the conference will keep its basketball tournament in Boise for the next five years. Big Sky Commissioner Tom Wistrcill hinted at the new deal during his interview with KIDO Talk Radio.  You can  access that interview on our podcast section of this website for Thursday 8am.  Several elected and community members appeared in the Twitter announcement.

The commissioner told KIDO Talk Radio that the conference was looking for a city that was centrally located.  He said that Boise's location allowed eight of his conference's schools to travel to Boise via buses.  The city of trees has another advantage that there is no Big Sky Conference University in Boise.  The conference expects more fans to attend next years men's and women's tournament.

Covid restrictions have limited the popularity of the tournament.  Last year, the tournament was cancelled because of the Covid virus.  This year local and state restrictions have kept the crowds to a minimum.  Governor Brad Little echoed the commissioner's pride in their partnership, "We are so proud to continue to bring the tournament for Idahoans to enjoy along with the significant economic impact it brings to our state."

Boise was not the only city that wanted to bid to host the Big Sky Basketball Tournament.  The commissioner told KIDO Talk Radio that five cities submitted bids for the event.  Public and private partnerships strengthened the offer to the Big Sky Conference.  Here are the details from the conference's press release:

Several entities have collaborated to help host the Big Sky Basketball Championships. These partners include the arena, Block 22 Hotels, the Boise Convention & Visitors Bureau, Idaho Tourism, Southwest Idaho Travel Association, the Boise Centre, St. Luke’s, and the Boise Airport, as well as the Offices of the Mayor of Boise and the Governor of Idaho.

“I'm excited to continue our partnership with the Big Sky Conference to bring safe and fun entertainment to the City of Boise,” said Mayor Lauren McLean. “I can't wait to welcome all the athletes to our great community and root them on in person.”

The 2021 Big Sky Basketball Championships, which for a third consecutive year is being held in Boise, are currently in progress with the four men’s quarterfinal games being played today, followed by the men’s semifinals and women’s championship tomorrow and the men’s title contest Saturday. 

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