TEMPE – The Phoenix/Glendale region and the University of Phoenix Stadium has been chosen as a finalist in the bid process to host the NCAA Men’s Basketball Final Four for years 2017-2020, as announced by the NCAA Division I Men’s and Women’s Basketball Committees on Monday.
The eight finalists for the Men’s Final Four are Atlanta, Indianapolis, Minneapolis, New Orleans, North Texas, Phoenix/Glendale, San Antonio and St. Louis.
Glendale's University of Phoenix Stadium served as a regional host in 2009, while Arizona State has also been the host school for regionals at the US Airways Center in 2012, 2008, 2004 and 1999. The state has hosted NCAA men's tournament action another 18 times for early-round games with Arizona State hosting in Tempe in 1975, 1976, 1978, 1980, 1992 and 1996.
"On behalf of our entire region and state, we are thrilled that Phoenix/Glendale has advanced as a finalist city in the NCAA Final Four bid process for 2017-2020. Our entire Local Organizing Committee composed of key stakeholders in the surrounding communities including government, business and tourism leaders coupled with AZSTA, The University of Phoenix Stadium and The Cardinals are committed to producing a bid that will bring the highest-profiled NCAA Championship to our region," says Dawn Rogers, Senior Associate Athletic Director at Arizona State. "The western United States deserves to host a Final Four, and we have the cooperation, energy, passion and support of every municipality in our region to support this unique event. We look forward to working toward a successful bid over the coming year with our strong consortium of leaders already working on the upcoming Super Bowl and College Football Championship."
It should be noted that Phoenix/Glendale and the University of Phoenix Stadium only a finalist as a prospective Final Four host site and has not officially been selected at this time, pending the final bidding process that will take place over the coming year.
Completed bids are due in May, with the respective committees and staffs spending the summer reviewing each bid before making site visits to each finalist city in August, September and October. Representatives from each finalist city will make in-person presentations to the respective committees during their annual fall meetings in early November 2014 in Indianapolis, followed by the announcement of the winning bids later that month.
The preliminary rounds for the 2016-18 men’s basketball tournaments will also be announced in November.
Prospective bid cities had until mid-October to submit a declaration of intent to bid, a draft budget, hotel rates and confirmation of adherence to the NCAA’s bid specifications by mid-November. The men’s and women’s basketball staffs and select committee members met with representatives of each city’s host committee last month and updated the men’s and women’s basketball committees at meetings in San Diego earlier this month. When evaluating prospective hosts, the committee will review each city’s competition venue, transportation and lodging, and the region’s overall commitment to the event.
For the Men’s Final Four, venues must hold a minimum of 60,000 fans, and host cities or regions must be able to provide at least 10,000 full-service hotel rooms within reasonable proximity to the competition venue.The 2014 Men’s Final Four will be played in North Texas, while Indianapolis will host in 2015. Houston will host the event in 2016.