WEST LAFAYETTE — The Purdue's women's basketball team and two others have pulled out of a Las Vegas tournament after fallout from a similar event that was held over Thanksgiving weekend.
Dayton and Texas A&M have also pulled their teams from the Las Vegas Holiday Hoops Classic at South Point Arena.
"After careful consideration and in the best interest of student-athletes and staff, the Purdue women's basketball team will no longer compete in the Las Vegas Holiday Hoops Classic over Dec. 20 and 21," the team said in an announcement issued Tuesday. "The Boilermakers will keep its matchup with Texas A&M on the schedule. Purdue will now travel to College Station on Dec. 21 for a 2 p.m. (ET) tipoff against the Aggies."
Although Purdue has not issued anything regarding their reasoning for pulling out of the Las Vegas tournament, it comes on the heels of a similar tournament that IU Women's Basketball took part in which drew criticism for the location and accommodations.
The Las Vegas invitational, which was held in a banquet hall at the Mirage Hotel, was marred by problems. Once such incident included not having medical personnel on site when a player from Auburn was injured and left laying on the court for 50 minutes until EMTs arrived.
The incident caused the IU women's basketball game against Memphis to begin late.
"It took about 45 minutes to get the ambulance to the arena before she was able to be lifted up into the stretcher and taken off the floor,” Austin Render the play-by-play broadcaster for Indiana University Women’s Basketball said. “So that pushed our game back about an hour and 20 minutes. “
IU Women's Basketball Coach Teri Moren said these types of events have been held in banquet halls before, but this venue didn't meet the teams’ expectations per the tournament's promises.
"What's disappointing is the aesthetics,” Moren said following the event. “It's not a fan-friendly environment. As I said to the site coordinator, as women’s basketball coaches we are trying to move our game forward."
"This is not what was described to us as far as what the venue was going to look like what the set up was going to look like, " More said.
WRTV has reached out to Purdue for further clarification on their decision.
“The five teams that are going to be at the South Point were five teams we already had,” tournament operations manager Bret Seymour told the Associated Press. “To be honest, our other five are happy they (the three that withdrew) aren't there anymore because they like it as a non-Power Five event. We took those three to help. It's OK. It's really actually better for us because they're not there this year for that particular event."
The Las Vegas Holiday Hoops Classic will be played Dec. 19-21 and includes Campbell, Cleveland State, Jacksonville State, Lindenwood and Utah Tech.
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