KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Kansas City might soon be host to an additional NCAA championship after the NCAA pulled all of its championship games out of North Carolina due to laws that discriminate against the LGBT community.
One of the championships moving out of North Carolina is the first and second round of the NCAA Basketball Tournament next March.
Kansas City is already hosting the Big 12 Tournament and the third and fourth rounds of the NCAA tournament, so if the NCAA did move those basketball games to Kansas City, the city would be hosting three straight weekends of tournament basketball.
It's not yet clear if that’s realistic, but Kansas City could bid to host one of the championships leaving North Carolina. They include soccer, tennis, golf and lacrosse.
The most realistic scenario might be soccer since Kansas City has great fields including Children’s Mercy Park and Swope Park, but the soccer championships are in December, so it would be very cold.
The head of the KC Sports Commission, Kathy Nelson, said, “Before we respond, we would want to see how the NCAA would proceed. We have to see if we could accommodate any of these events in regard to venue, hotel space and dates. But our interest would be high."
Nelson told FOX 4 that hosting NCAA championships brings in about $50-million to the local economy, but just this past spring, Missouri lawmakers threatened to derail that flow of money with anti-LGBT legislation. The Religious Freedom bill did not get enough votes.
The NCAA issued a statement that said in part, “NCAA championships and events must promote an inclusive atmosphere for all college athletes, coaches, administrators and fans. Current North Carolina state laws make it challenging to guarantee that host communities can help deliver on that commitment.”
NCAA Championships Leaving North Carolina:
- Div. I Men’s Basketball 1st and 2nd Round
- Div. I Women’s Soccer
- Div. I Women’s Golf
- Div. I Women’s Lacrosse
- Div. II Men’s Basketball
- Div. III Men’s and Women’s Soccer
- Div. III Men’s and Women’s Tennis