USC Interested in Hosting March Madness Games

USC athletics director Ray Tanner says if and when Columbia submits a bid to host the NCAA men's tournament. there are a number of selling points - not the least of which is recent experience in hosting the NCAA Women's Tournament.

Columbia, SC (WLTX) - The University of South Carolina is hinting that it wants to host the first and second round games of the NCAA men's basketball tournament. 

ESPN reported Tuesday that the school had put in a bid to host first and second round games. However, USC Athletics Director Ray Tanner said the bid has not been formally submitted, but said that's something they're looking at.

"We have a few days to decide if we are going to submit a bid," he said Tuesday afternoon.

Tanner said they hope to hear back from the NCAA by October. If approved, the games would be played at the Colonial Life Arena.

The contests were originally scheduled to take place in Greensboro, North Carolina, However, earlier this month, the NCAA announced North Carolina would lose the right to host postseason tournaments, including March Madness, because of the state's decision to pass what's commonly referred to as HB 2. 

That measure restricts a transgender person's ability to use the bathroom of their chose statewide. Other organizations have announced similar sanctions, including the NBA's decision to take the All-Star Game away from Charlotte. 

In addition to Columbia, Greenville could be in the running to host the games. 

South Carolina, you may recall, could not host NCAA tournaments themselves as part of an NCAA sanction for putting the Confederate flag at the South Carolina State House. That was rescinded, however, in the weeks after lawmakers removed the flag in July of 2015. 

USC has hosted NCAA first round games for the women's tournament the last two years. 




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