March Madness: Which NCAA Tournament Top Seed Got Easiest Travel Schedule?

March Madness: Which NCAA Tournament Top Seed Got Easiest Travel Schedule?
Fact Checked by Pat McLoone

It’s been more than 40 years since the Purdue Boilermakers last reached the Final Four. The 1980 squad, led by then-head coach Gene Keady, reached the national semifinals. The program’s last national title came 92 years ago.

This year, Matt Painter’s bunch is the top seed in the Midwest region, a year after Purdue became the second school in NCAA Tournament history on the men’s side to lose to a 16 seed in the first round. The Boilermakers were shocked by Farleigh-Dickinson, 63-58.

Another example of why you need to be careful when wagering in Indiana sports betting.

This week, Purdue will face the winner of the “First Four” showdown between Montana State and Grambling in Indianapolis, some 67 miles up I-65 from the school’s West Lafayette campus, before possibly venturing to Detroit to play whichever team advances out of the other end of the Midwest region in the Sweet 16 and Elite Eight.

All told, Purdue faces 2,761 miles of travel (from West Lafayette to Indy, Detroit and Glendale, Ariz.) should the Boilermakers make it back to the Final Four in 2024, which ranks as the fourth-lowest total of any program seeded 1-4.

To show where Purdue stands nationally, – your source for Indiana sports betting apps - broke down the distances that schools will travel between this week’s rounds of 64 and 32 and the Final Four in the Phoenix area during the first Saturday of April.

Top 4 Seeds Mileage If They Make Final Four

RankTeamSeed, RegionPotential LocationsTotal Mileage (if make Final Four)
1 Arizona# 2 in WestSalt Lake City, LA, Glendale1,394 miles
2Marquette# 2 in SouthIndianapolis, Dallas, Glendale2,539 miles
3 Kentucky# 3 in SouthPittsburgh, Dallas, Glendale2,552 miles
4 Purdue# 1 in MidwestIndianapolis, Detroit, Glendale2,761 miles
5 Kansas#4 in MidwestSalt Lake City, Detroit, Glendale2,782 miles
6 UConn# 1 in EastBrooklyn, Boston, Glendale1,394 miles
7 Creighton# 3 in MidwestPittsburgh, Detroit, Glendale2,884 miles
8 Iowa State# 2 in EastOmaha, Boston, Glendale2,934 miles
9 Tennessee# 2 in MidwestCharlotte, Detroit, Glendale2,940 miles
10 Baylor# 2 in WestMemphis, LA, Glendale3,031 miles
11 Houston# 1 in SouthMemphis, Dallas, Glendale3,069 miles
12 Illinois# 3 in EastOmaha, Boston, Glendale3,240 miles
13 Duke# 4 in SouthBrooklyn, Dallas, Glendale3,031 miles
14 North Carolina# 1 in WestCharlotte, LA, Glendale4,865 miles
15 Auburn# 4 in EastSpokane, Boston, Glendale5,360 miles
16 Alabama# 4 in WestSpokane, LA, Glendale5,952 miles

🏀 Bet on the Boilermakers at the Caesars Indiana Sportsbook

Where Purdue Ranks Nationally

Nationally, Purdue would have the fourth-shortest distance to travel from round one to the championship game, at 2,761 miles, ranking behind the Arizona Wildcats (1,394 miles), Marquette Golden Eagles (2,539 miles) and Kentucky Wildcats (2,552 miles).

That relative homecourt advantage is one of the reasons why the Boilermakers are currently No. 3 on ESPN BET Indiana’s championship odds board, at +700, ranking ahead of Kentucky (+1100) and Marquette (+2000).

For now, Painter and his staff are likely focused on Purdue’s opening-round showdown with whichever 16th seed survives their ordeal in Dayton, with the two sides meeting in the heart of Indiana on Friday evening, a figurative stone’s throw from the Boilermakers’ home campus.

Count on to cover Purdue throughout the tournament, as well as monitor any developments on online Indiana casinos.

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Christopher Boan

Christopher Boan is a staff writer for He has covered sports and sports betting for more than seven years and has worked for publications such as, the Tucson Weekly and the Green Valley News.