The Ohio Valley Conference Men’s and Women’s Basketball Tournaments once again return to the Nashville Municipal Auditorium Wednesday through Saturday, March 5-8. The combined men’s and women’s championship have been held at Municipal Auditorium eight previous times: 1994, 1995, 1996, 2004, 2008, 2011, 2012 and 2013. The Men’s Tournament also held its championship at the venue in 1989. Prior to the tournament being at the end of the season, the 1967 men’s tournament was also held at Municipal Auditorium in December of that year.
The move to Municipal Auditorium keeps the championships in Nashville, a place it will have been held 20 times in the last 21 years after this year’s event. The only year the tournaments have not been held in Nashville during that stretch was 2002. Future OVC Basketball Tournament dates include March 4-7, 2015.
The format this year once again involves the top eight men’s and women’s teams playing in a merit-based format. The No. 1 and 2 seeds receive two byes to the semifinals while the No. 3 and 4 seeds receive one bye into the quarterfinals. The first round includes the No. 5 seed against the No. 8 seed; and the No. 6 seed against the No. 7 seed.
Men’s games are at 6 pm and 8 pm Wednesday and Thursday, 6:30 pm and 9 pm, Friday. The championship is at 6 pm, Saturday. Women’s games are at noon Wednesday, Thursday and Friday—with the championship at 1, pm Saturday.
As part of the deal to host the tournament at Municipal Auditorium, the Nashville City Council and Municipal Auditorium committed $200,000 to improvements at the venue, which opened in 1962. Among the major improvements included upgrades to the dressing rooms, two new scoreboards and the new OVC-branded playing surface.
For the fifth consecutive season, the 2014 Men’s Basketball Championship game will be broadcast by the Westwood One Sports radio network, the largest provider of audio content in America. Westwood One Sports is the largest independent national audio media company in the U.S., delivering audio content to over 8,200+ radio stations and digital media companies.
The Tennessee State University Lady Tigers women’s basketball team is likely to make the eight member field and open play on Wednesday, March 5. Tennessee State was 10-15 (7-5 OVC) and in third place in the East Division as of Feb. 16. TSU was averaging 70.0 points per outing while shooting 38.1 percent from the field. Chelsea Hudson leads the team in scoring with 15.7 points per game while Rachel Allen (12.0 ppg), Alana Morris (7.3 ppg), Brianna Lawrence Davis (7.0 ppg) and I’mani Davis (7.0 ppg) round out the top scorers for TSU.
The Lady Tigers finished last season with an overall record of 13-15 and a 9-7 Conference mark. TSU was predicted to finish fifth in the East Division standings. Tennessee State’s Tigers men’s team was a dismal 3-24, 2-11 heading into their final games, last place in the East Division.