Battle in the Boro tournament expands into Nashville - WSMV Channel 4

Battle in the Boro tournament expands into Nashville

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MURFREESBORO, TN (WSMV) -

It's the best of the best of girls basketball.

"If you are a travel team you want to be in the Battle in the Boro," said Tom Insell, organizer of the tournament.

AAU, independent, and Nike basketball teams from all over the country, as far away as New York, are in town.

"The Battle in the Boro is the biggest exposure event in the country for girls basketball," Insell said.

The Battle in the Boro started about 10 years ago with only 32 teams. It has grown to nearly 500 and has outgrown the City of Murfreesboro.

"Murfreesboro had a good run there, and it just got where we didn't have enough facilities and not enough hotels," Insell said.

Despite the tourney leaving town in 2011, the overall economic impact in Rutherford County the next year without the tournament was $272 million, a $20 million increase.

"Would we love to host this event once again, absolutely, if we had the facilities," said Barbara Wolke, VP of the Rutherford County Convention and Visitors Bureau.

The Battle in the Boro has now expanded into Nashville.

Part of the new Music City Center has been transformed into a basketball mecca with 30 removable courts.

"It's the Taj Mahal of convention centers right now," Insell said.

When you bring in 1,600 players, 1,000 college coaches and recruiters and 15,000 fans, you can see why the hotels are booked and restaurants are packed.

"It impacts everyone around, not just Franklin and Nashville," Insell said.

Henry Howard is from South Carolina. He expects to spend well over $600 on this trip, but he says it's worth it.

"It's the sacrifice as parents that we make for our kids," Howard said.

The Battle in the Boro is not just a battle on the basketball court, but it has other Midstate cities battling for these millions of tourists' dollars.

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