Fans not pleased with Big 12's decision to ban fans due to coronavirus

Posted at 10:29 PM, Mar 11, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-12 00:05:38-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Word of the announcement spread quickly Wednesday among fans enjoying the Big 12 experience outside the Sprint Center, and many of them weren't happy.

On Wednesday night, the Big 12 Tournament announced that, after that night’s game, it would not allow fans to attend games due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Iowa State fans Stacey Kinsey and her husband, Lance, shelled out big bucks to spend the week in Kansas City, Missouri, and watch the Big 12 games.

"We spent $600 on tickets and then our room, that’s another $300 a night,” Kinsey said. “So that’s four nights, that’s a couple thousand dollars.”

They were among the fans who were able to watch their team on the court at the Sprint Center.

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But come Thursday, with the limited access in place, the Kinseys and other fans will have to catch the rest of the games elsewhere.

"I think there’s a little too much hype,” Lance Kinsey said, “and I think that the unfortunate part is that once these things start, you can’t stop it. I’m not belittling the situation, but at the end of the day cooler heads have to prevail. And it’s like you can talk yourself into something, and I think we’re doing it."

Some fans are worried how this move will affect some of the teams' outcomes.

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"It [is] definitely going to be different," Nate Thompson, a University of Kansas fan, said. "I never watch the March Madness without the excitement of the fans, and it definitely [is] going to take out a lot of those Cinderella teams because you know they get better and they win those games because of the fans rooting for them.”

Fans bought tickets for the Big 12 from several vendors.

The Sprint Center released the following statement about refunds:

"For guests who purchased tickets with a credit card through,, in person at Price Chopper Box Office at Sprint Center, or charge-by-phone at 888.929.7849, will receive automatic refunds to the original card used for purchase for the games impacted by today’s announcement. Refunds will start on Thursday, March 12. Tickets purchased with cash directly at Price Chopper Box Office at Sprint Center for Sessions 2-5 that have been impacted by today’s announcement may be returned for a refund during business hours, Monday-Friday between 10 a.m.- 6 p.m."

Fans who bought tickets through the Kansas Athletics Office also will receive a refund.