CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The Basketball Tournament is back in Charleston this weekend and into next week and city officials are hoping for repeated excitement from last year’s event.
The tournament (TBT) is a single elimination, 64-team event in which the winning team splits a $1 million prize. Games in the West Virginia Regional are being held Sunday through Wednesday at the Charleston Coliseum and Convention Center.
In the 2021 event in Charleston, 16 teams played but this year there will be eight teams including WVU alumni team Best Virginia and Marshall alumni team Herd That.
“It won’t be quite as big this year but we think it’s going to be just as much if not more fun than it was last year. I think people in the community are excited,” Tim Brady, president and CEO of the Charleston Convention and Visitors Bureau told MetroNews flagship 580-WCHS in Charleston.
Best Virginia will face No. 8 Virginia Dream on Sunday in the last of four first-round contests in the regional. The matchup is scheduled to tip at approximately 7 p.m., and it will immediately follow a contest between No. 4 Herd That and No. 5 Founding Fathers at 5 p.m.
Brady said the Sunday evening time slots are favorable for event officials and fans.
“That’s a great way to have those teams scheduled because you can get through all of your Sunday obligations and then come out and watch great basketball with the alumni teams from Marshall and WVU,” Brady said.
Best Virginia and Herd That are within opening-round victories of an all-Mountain State second-round matchup, something Brady said Charleston officials are hoping for.
The winner of the West Virginia Regional will meet the winner of the Dayton Regional at the University of Dayton Arena on Friday, July 29 in a round-of-8 contest. That matchup begins at approximately 9 p.m.
Brady added that Charleston is unlikely to host the event again in 2023 but sees it coming back at some point.
“We don’t anticipate hosting next year but we have a really good relationship with TBT and I think for us, a great model would be two on and two off to build that enthusiasm and excitement down the line,” he said.
2022 TBT WEST VIRGINIA REGIONAL SCHEDULE
Game 1: Sunday, July 24 – (2) Bucketneers (ETSU) vs. (7) Fully Loaded, noon
Game 2: Sunday, July 24 – (3) WoCo Showtime (Wofford) vs. (6) War Ready (Auburn), 2 p.m.
Game 3: Sunday, July 24 – (4) Herd That (Marshall) vs. (5) Founding Fathers (James Madison), 5 p.m.
Game 4: Sunday, July 24 – (1) Best Virginia (West Virginia) vs. (8) Virginia Dream, 7 p.m.
Game 5: Tuesday, July 26 – Bucketneers/Fully Loaded winner vs. WoCo Showtime/War Ready winner, 6 p.m.
Game 6: Tuesday, July 26 – Best Virginia/Virginia Dream winner vs. Herd That/Founding Fathers winner, 8 p.m.
West Virginia Regional Championship
Game 7: Wednesday, July 27 – Game 5 Winner vs. Game 6 Winner, 7 p.m.