NCAA Tournament to return to Providence in 2021

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — The city of Providence has once again been selected to host first- and second-round games of the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament.

A spokesperson for Providence College announced Tuesday that games will be played at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center on March 18 and 20, 2021.

“For the city of Providence, it’s just a great event,” said Larry Lepore, general manager of the Dunk. “It really does what the building was meant to do, which is bring people downtown, fill hotels and restaurants.”

The city most recently played host to the Big Dance in 2010 and 2016.

“If you look at the locations that the NCAA awarded, we are the smallest facility in the country that got a first and second round,” Lepore added. “So it shows that we do a really good event.”

The event also means millions of tourism dollars for the state, according to Lepore.

The PC Friars made their third straight tournament appearance last month, quickly getting knocked out by USC, while the Rams earned their first tournament berth since 1999 and their first win since 1998. They were bounced by Oregon in the second round.