SoCon basketball tournament to move from Asheville over HB2?

HB2, a controversial law that many believe allows for discrimination against the LGBTQ community, has cost the state of North Carolina some very profitable sporting events and one more could soon follow.

Since the passing of the law, the NBA has pulled its annual all-star weekend from Charlotte and, most recently, the NCAA announced it has moved scheduled first- and second-round games from the NCAA Tournament from North Carolina due to the discriminatory nature of HB2.

Now, the SoCon basketball tournament could be following suit.

Southern Conference commissioner John Iamarino recently hinted that the conference could decide to pull the men’s and women’s basketball tournaments from Asheville.

A decision is expected to come up during future meetings in October and November.

“We have meetings of athletic administrators in October and meetings of presidents and chancellors in early November and this subject is on both agendas. I’m sure will have a full discussion and figure out what the response will be to the NCAA’s decision,” Iamarino said, via the Citizen-Times.

“It’s going to be the membership’s decision and we understand that any decision that the membership will make is independent of what the NCAA’s decision was. In other words the NCAA doesn’t tell conferences you’ve got to follow suit or you can’t play your championship in a certain location.

“That’s ultimately our decision as a conference. I wouldn’t rule anything in or out at this point.”

The Southern Conference consists of only two teams from North Carolina, Western Carolina and UNC Greensboro. So far, there is no indication the tournament will be relocated, but Iamarino’s comments certainly leave the door open for the possibility of a last-minute switch.

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