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Hoop it up: Phoenix among nation’s 30 best basketball towns

(AP Photo/Brandon Dill)

PHOENIX — Football season has come to a close and, as we enter March, a lot of sports fans turn from the gridiron to the hardwood.

While Arizona is undoubtedly a diehard football state, at one point, we were known more for the Phoenix Suns than the Red Birds.

That likely led to website WalletHub naming the Valley of the Sun in its top 30 basketball cities in the country, because Phoenix did not fare that well in factors the site used to rank cities.

Though we came in at 29th overall, Phoenix fared decently when it came to the city’s teams — both professional and college — and their performance. However, the city took a hit when it came to costs to go to a game and fan engagement.

In addition to having some of the most disengaged NBA fans — Suns fans only outscored those New York City and Philadelphia — Phoenix also took a hit for how difficult it is to get to the city’s basketball arenas.

But that’s not to say Arizona fared poorly in the study. We would be remiss should we leave out the University of Arizona.

The Wildcats were ranked the fourth-best team in the country when it came to the overall performance of its basketball team.

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