WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) — Wichita basketball fans are getting an early Christmas present – news that The Basketball Tournament (TBT) and the AfterShocks are returning to Wichita next year.
“Wichitans have consistently shown so much excitement and support for this tournament – setting attendance records and creating a thrilling basketball atmosphere inside Charles Koch Arena,” Josh Howell, vice president of sports development for Visit Wichita, said in a news release.
TBT is a 64-team, $1 million winner-take-all event televised live on ESPN. Wichita will host the TBT Regional and Quarterfinals at Wichita State University’s Charles Koch Arena.
Some former WSU Shocker stars will also be back to play on the alumni team — the AfterShocks. They will be the featured team in the eight-team Wichita Regional, July 22-25.
Wichita will host one of TBT’s quarterfinals games for the first time. The winner of the Omaha Regional will play the winner of the Wichita Regional on July 28.
“Wichita State fans continue to amaze us,” said TBT founder and CEO Jon Mugar. “Not only do they own the all-time TBT attendance record, but they also put on an amazing show every year supporting their AfterShocks.”
When Wichita first hosted the TBT in 2019, it broke the TBT attendance record for four straight days, drawing 20,000 fans to Koch Arena to see Aftershocks compete in their first TBT.
After a year away due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the event returned to Wichita in 2021. More than 6,500 fans turned out to see the AfterShocks punch their first-ever ticket to the TBT quarterfinals behind some Elam Ending heroics from hometown hero Conner Frankamp.
Early commitments for the AfterShocks’ 2022 roster include Frankamp and Rashard Kelly. In addition, Zach Bush will continue to serve as the team’s head coach and co-general manager, along with John Robert Simon. Additional roster announcements will be made at a later date.
“Having TBT continue to return to Wichita each year is a tremendous honor for our team, but it’s a testament to how special the Shockers fan base is,” Frankamp said. “I love coming back here each summer to create new memories with my teammates, and can’t wait to do it again in 2022.”
The AfterShocks and seven other teams will compete in the Wichita Regional, with all games shown on ESPN. After TBT’s quarterfinals game on July 28, the other six quarterfinalists will play at UD Arena in Dayton, Ohio, July 29-30. The last two rounds will also be in Dayton, with the semifinals on July 31. Finally, the $1 million winner-take-all championship game will be played on Aug. 2 on ESPN.
The 64-team field and TBT bracket will be released in late June.
Tickets are on sale now at TheTournament.com/tickets and the Wichita State box office. All-session passes begin at $55 and include entry for all eight games, including the quarterfinals.