The NCAA is warming up the big guns to hurt North Carolina where it hurts if HB2 isn't repealed: right in the March Madness.
The NCAA could soon pull championship events from North Carolina through 2022 if House Bill 2 is not repealed, according to a letter sent to state legislators Monday by the N.C. Sports Association.
“Our contacts at the NCAA tell us that, due to their stance on HB2, all North Carolina bids will be pulled from the review process and removed from consideration,” Scott Dupree of the N.C. Sports Association and Greater Raleigh Sports Alliance wrote. “That process will begin in the various sports committees starting in 7 to 10 days and continuing through February. At that point, we will be faced with a six-year drought of NCAA championships in North Carolina.”
The NCAA has already moved championship events for the current academic year to other states due to concerns that the law is discriminatory. HB2 struck down local nondiscrimination ordinances and requires transgender people to use the bathroom that corresponds to the gender on their birth certificate while visiting government facilities.
Dupree wrote that his “letter is not intended to be political in any way, but rather objective and fact-based, so that all interested parties will have a clear understanding of what’s at stake.”
“In a matter of days, our state’s sports tourism industry will suffer crushing, long-term losses and will essentially close its doors to NCAA business,” the letter continues. “Our window to act is closing rapidly.”
Dupree says other sports leagues could join the NCAA in bypassing North Carolina.
“When the NCAA decides it will no longer conduct events in North Carolina, the Atlantic Coast Conference and many other sports organizations will surely follow,” he wrote. “When compounding the effect of losing these additional sporting events, including hundreds of youth and amateur events, plus the NBA All-Star Game, we believe North Carolina could lose upwards of a half-billion dollars in economic impact.”
Again, NC already lost all NCAA tournament events for this year. Losing them for another five on top of that would be devastating to the state's economy, but maybe by then my home state will have kicked out the Republican bigots that ran the place into the ground under Gov. Pat McCrory.
Ball's in your court, NC GOP. That's a lot of money you're going to be losing.