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Big Ten tournament headed to DC in 2017

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Looking to increase exposure in East Coast markets with the addition of Maryland and Rutgers, the Big Ten announced Tuesday that the men’s basketball tournament will be played at the Verizon Center in Washington, D.C., in 2017.

Maryland and Rutgers are set to join the conference on July 1.

On Monday, the Big Ten announced an annual season-opening Gavitt Tipoff series of games with schools from the Big East, which is made up predominantly of teams in the East.

The Big Ten also is opening a second office in New York City and a satellite office in Washington.

“At the time Maryland came in, we set an aggressive goal — to live in two regions in the country,” Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany said. “Those were our words. We’ve been working hard over the last 18 months to match our actions to our words.”

The Big Ten tournament has shifted between Indianapolis and Chicago since it started in 1998. The 2015 tournament will be held at the United Center in Chicago and the 2016 event at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis.

“These events will live in the east and also in the Midwest,” he said. “There will be a rotation.”

The Big Ten also is increasing its East Coast presence with a commitment to the Pinstripe Bowl in Yankee Stadium and bringing on Johns Hopkins as a lacrosse-playing member of the conference.

“Becoming part of the Big Ten is something we’re very excited about,” Maryland athletic director Kevin Anderson said. “This is a prime example of what kind of partnership we’ll have.”

Up to the minute news and reports from the news wire of The Sports Xchange.

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