Northwestern is preparing for what should amount to a short stay at Allstate Arena, its temporary home for men’s basketball.
Future seasons of Northwestern basketball are being planned for Welsh-Ryan Arena, which is undergoing a major overhaul that should improve fan and player amenities. Construction on the project forced Northwestern to seek a temporary venue for the 2017-18 season, and the program was able to find a home at Rosemont, IL’s Allstate Arena.
Opening in 1980 as Rosemont Horizion, Allstate Arena was home to DePaul men’s basketball through last season. DePaul will begin play at the new Wintrust Arena in Chicago for the 2017-18 season, but its former home remains on the NCAA men’s basketball slate as a temporary facility for Northwestern. Northwestern is only expected to spend one season at Allstate Arena, but the program has taken considerable time to plan the logistics of playing away from campus. More from The Daily Herald:
“Certainly, it’s going to be different this year not having an on-campus facility,” said Wildcats coach Chris Collins at Big Ten media day. “We’re excited about what’s coming down the pike. But for this year, logistically, it will be different.”
DePaul had to deal with similar issues, and having to bus up to Allstate Arena from its Lincoln Park campus was not ideal.
Northwestern will make the most of traveling down from Evanston, and it’s only for one season.
“During the off-season, I was able to pick the brain of DePaul’s staff a little bit,” Collins said. “Being around those guys, you see the coaches out on the road in the summer and during the recruiting period, just to get an idea from them, how did they approach the travel from campus out there? What did they do? What would they have done differently if they could? Things of that nature.”
Northwestern’s regular-season debut at Allstate Arena will take place Friday, when it hosts Loyola University Maryland.
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