Originally Posted by RiverRat13
I think the adversity of playing on another team's home floor better prepares a team (i.e. toughens them up) than a neutral site game.
I don't see how a neutral floor helps TV ratings. I don't think more people would have turned into UNC at UK had it been played in Nashville, Charlotte, or Louisville. The recruiting argument holds some weight although coaches could certainly just schedule a home-and-home with a team in a particular area they would like to recruit. I like the early tournaments (Great Alaska, Preseason NIT) but I'm just not a fan of moving more and more games off campuses.
There are no home games in the tourney and neutral site games are often played in large arenas. Both of those trump any perceived "toughness" gained by being spit on, cursed at, and generally abused by fans of opposing teams. You get enough of that in conference rivalry games.
TV decisions are often based on geography and "big" regular -season games, a la Maui, Alaska, Mohegan, and Puerto Rico Tournaments. Too, you have games played at MSG and often elsewhere early in the season that ensure national games on either ESPN or one of the four free channel networks. The bigger the stage, the more likely it's televised over a larger section of the country.
For example, two years ago, Kentucky went to Portland to play at the Rose Garden versus the University of Portland. That game was picked up by ESPN and broadcast as its game of the week. If that game is in Lexington or at the Chiles Center, it doesn't get TV outside of the Big Blue Network or perhaps Fox Sports South.