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The Summit League Tournament Experience

Its March and every March us sports fans get enthralled into euphoria with March Madness and all the basketball hoop la that is encompassed.

The start of the madness each March begins with the conference tournaments.

I have been able to attend the Pac12 Tournament, the West Coast Conference (WCC) Tournament, the SEC Tournament and the Summit League Tournament just a year ago.

Although the talent level of the players across the board is better at the major conference tournaments, the atmosphere at the Summit League Tournament in Sioux Falls,SD at the Sioux Falls Arena is second to none.

Clearly in 2013 with Nate Wolters leading SDSU to another Summit League Tournament Title and a berth in the NCAA Tournament, there was a certain buzz surrounding the arena, but it was a great atmosphere throughout, whether Nate was playing or not.

In addition, the Summit League has both their Men’s and Women’s Tournaments together at the same site during the same time period.  This in itself gets more people in the seats for multiple sessions considering the cross-over of schools participating in both tournament settings.

One other aspect that I think was different from maybe the SEC, Pac12 or WCC Tournament was that when the Summit League Tournament comes to town, its legitimately the BIG SHOW in town.

Sioux Falls has plenty to do and plenty of activities each and every week, but it seemed last year as if every where I went in town, every media outlet I tuned into or even just conversations at work were centered around the happenings at the Sioux Falls Arena and the Summit League Tournament.

This year’s tournament may not feature a future NBA starter as it did a year ago with Nate Wolters, but according to the Summit League Commissioner Tom Douple, “This year’s tournament field is as deep as we’ve ever had” in regards to overall talent.

Plus, moving forward, its only going to get better with the event moving next door in 2015 as all games will be played in the new Denny Sanford Premier Center that will open in the fall of 2014.

So make sure if you are in the Sioux Falls area from March 8-11, 2014 that you have your tickets to the Tournament and if you’re not in the area, make plans to attend the Summit League Tournament at least once to experience what a great event it is.

For ticket information for the Summit League Tournament check out www.ticketmaster.com

** YOU CAN EMAIL JEFF THURN AT JT@ESPN991.COM & FOLLOW HIM ON TWITTER @JTESPN991

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