Cincinnati Among Top Cities for College Basketball Fans in 2021, Report Says

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click to enlarge Xavier University team in 2016
Xavier University team in 2016

Just in time for March Madness, a new study finds that Cincinnati is a basketball fan’s dream.

According to a March 10 report by WalletHub, Cincinnati is among the best cities for college basketball fans in 2021. The report ranks Cincinnati at No. 10 for large cities and at No. 37 overall.

In addition, WalletHub rep Diana Polk shares in an email that Cincinnati is fourth in conference championships, 10th in national titles, 13th in number of Division I teams and 20th in winning percentage for 2021.

Durham, North Carolina is No. 1 for college basketball fans this year, followed by Lexington, Kentucky, and East Lansing, Michigan.

Speaking of Lexington, a separate infographic of the costs associated with March Madness shows that John Calipari’s $8.2 million salary at the University of Kentucky is the largest for any college basketball coach. The men’s basketball program there is valued at $334.2 million, the highest among all schools, WalletHub says.

To determine its rankings for the best cities for college basketball fans, WalletHub evaluated 290 U.S. cities on nine key metrics, including the number of teams per city, winning percentage, stadium capacity and social-media engagement.

NCAA Division I March Madness will look a little different this year. After being canceled in 2020 for the first time in the event’s history due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the tournament is back on for 2021 under a variety of safety protocols.

Tournament play begins March 18, with the championship game scheduled for April 5. For the first time, all games will take place within a single state — Indiana — to limit travel and the spread of coronavirus as much as possible.

Read WalletHub’s report on basketball cities, or see the March Madness bracket and schedule.