ORLANDO, Fla. - The NCAA announced today that Orlando and the Amway Center have been awarded the opportunity to host 2nd and 3rd round games of the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Tournament in 2014. The tournament games will be hosted locally by Stetson University and the Central Florida Sports Commission, in partnership with the City of Orlando, Orange County and the University of Central Florida.
“Being awarded this championship is a testament to the first-class venues and other community assets that we are able to offer the NCAA here in Central Florida” said John Bisignano, president of the Central Florida Sports Commission. “We look forward to working with the NCAA, Stetson University and our respective community partners to ensure the success of this prestigious event.”
“There is nothing more exciting than the NCAA men’s basketball tournament, March Madness and the road to the Final Four," Stetson University Director of Athletics Jeff Altier said. "To bring a part of this tournament to Orlando, and Central Florida, is the dream of any sports enthusiasts, and at Stetson University we are enthusiastic about sports!
Dates of the actual tournament games staged in Orlando will be March 20-22, 2014. Specific game times each day will be determined at a later date by the NCAA. Ticket information, including prices and hospitality packages, will also be made available at a future date by the Central Florida Sports Commission and Stetson University in conjunction with the NCAA.
“The vision for the new Amway Center was to be able to host these marquee events like the NCAA Basketball Tournament,” said Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer. “These events are not only exciting opportunities for our residents, but will draw thousands of people from across the country benefiting our local economy.”
The NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Tournament will attract thousands of fans from across the United States to our community, generating millions in economic impact for the region. In addition, the international and national exposure generated from the media and live telecast will be immeasurable for Orlando and Orange County. The NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Tournament was previously hosted in Orlando, with Stetson University serving as host, in 1993, 1996, 1999, and 2004 at the Amway Arena.
“Hosting the NCAA Basketball Tournament at the Amway Center is a great example of what our community can accomplish when we come together for a common goal,” said Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs. “This event will have a substantial positive impact on our economy and expose Central Florida’s evolving brand to viewers around the world.”
“We’re thrilled that Orlando has been selected to host NCAA Tournament games at the Amway Center,” said Todd Stansbury, Athletic Director at the University of Central Florida. “UCF will be a great partner to Stetson University, the Central Florida Sports Commission and the eight teams from around the country who will be visiting our area. UCF is pleased to support an event that will greatly benefit and showcase our community and the Central Florida region to the nation.”
The NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Tournament will add to the already growing list of marquee events that have and will be staged at the Amway Center. In addition to the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament, the Central Florida Sports Commission also has outstanding bids to host the ACC and SEC Men’s Basketball Tournaments. Announcements should be made on each of these events in the coming months.
About the Central Florida Sports Commission:
The Central Florida Sports Commission strategically solicits, creates and supports marquee sports-related events and businesses that enhance our community’s economy. The Sports Commission represents the counties of Lake, Orange, Osceola, Seminole and Volusia, as well as the City of Orlando. The Sports Commission also produces sports-related programs for the residents of Central Florida including the Celebrity Mascot Games, the SPORTYS, Breakfast of Champions, Gridiron 5K Challenge and the Daytona Beach Half Marathon.
About Stetson University:
Stetson University in central Florida dares its 3,877 undergraduate and graduate students to go beyond success – to significance. Since 1883, Stetson’s vision has remained constant, engaging students with rigorous academics and instilling civic values for life. An independent university, Stetson offers a comprehensive education in the arts and sciences, business, law and music. Stetson was the first private university in Florida to be awarded a chapter of Phi Beta Kappa, the nation’s oldest and most prestigious undergraduate honor society, and consistently earns high national rankings for academic excellence and community-engaged learning. The university has four locations across Central Florida: DeLand, Gulfport/St. Petersburg, Tampa and Celebration.