We all knew the Bryce Jordan Center was far from a good basketball arena, but recent rankings from stadiumjourney.com indicate even that might be too kind a description.
The BJC clocks in at No. 336 of 351 NCAA Division I basketball arenas on the site’s rankings, which took four years to compile. The rankings took into account the arenas’ food and beverages, overall atmosphere, neighborhood, fans, access, return on investment, and a “catchall” category for other aspects. Every arena has a write-up for each category, so the list looks legit.
Of those categories, the BJC nets 5/5 in neighborhood, but a 2/5 in everything else except extras, which gets a 0/5. Their reasoning for the 0 in extras sums up the BJC’s lack of appeal nicely:
“There is not much, if anything, in the way of tradition or history at the BJC. There is no nice display of past players or anything in the arena, except hidden in the coaches office in the lower level, inaccessible to the general public. It certainly feels like basketball is an afterthought at Penn State and unless you are really interested in seeing the opponent or the halftime entertainment, there is not much reason to attend a game.”
By way of comparison…
- No. 335 on this list is the Louis Brown Athletic Center of Rutgers, and No. 337 is Allstate Arena, where DePaul plays.
- The closest Big Ten arena is Illinois’ State Farm Center at No. 230, more than 100 spots higher than the BJC. Removing the outlier that is the BJC, the mean Big Ten arena ranking is about No. 57.
- The Petersen Events Center, where Pitt plays, is No. 14.