April 26, 2010

Opening Ceremony Day Home Page

NCAA RELEASE

(OMAHA, Neb. April 26, 2010) - The 2010 NCAA® Men's College World Series® will pay tribute to its home of 61 years with several exciting Rosenblatt Stadium tribute activities beginning with the June 18 Opening Celebration.

"The College World Series has become what it is today thanks in large part to the student-athletes and fans," said Dennis Poppe, NCAA vice president for baseball and football. "We are excited about the plans in place to celebrate the history of these participants, as well as the countless people who have contributed to making Rosenblatt Stadium synonymous with NCAA baseball."

"The Road to Omaha is a journey that's paved with wonderful memories and experiences for both the student-athletes and fans who have been coming to Rosenblatt Stadium since 1950," reflected Jack Diesing, Jr., president of College World Series of Omaha, Inc. (CWS, Inc.). "Through their participation, the memories of Rosenblatt will be preserved as a living legacy of what this remarkable stadium has meant to Omaha and Division I collegiate baseball."

The special tributes get underway on June 18 when the NCAA will be stationed in the Fan Fest area to videotape fans, coaches and student-athletes as they share their memories of Rosenblatt Stadium. Excerpts from these interviews will be shown on the video board throughout the Series.

Ongoing events in the NCAA Fan Fest area outside Rosenblatt Stadium include interactive games, contests, prizes, displays and photo opportunities presented by the NCAA and its family of Corporate Champions and Partners. Open team practice sessions will continue all day inside Rosenblatt Stadium, followed by autograph signings presented by NCAA Corporate Champion AT&T®, held one-half hour after the completion of each team practice. Baseball skills clinics for youth players will also be held throughout the day.


The 2010 College World Series Road to Omaha® Jam concert featuring country music singers Julianne Hough and Bucky Covington III will start at 6 p.m. in Rosenblatt's southeast parking area, immediately followed by Opening Ceremonies inside the stadium. A highlight of this year's Opening Ceremonies activities will be the introduction of the CWS Legends Team, which represents those student-athletes who had the best College World Series performances throughout the 60 years the event has been played at Rosenblatt Stadium. The team will consist of 27 members: two former student-athletes per fielding position, four pitchers, two designated hitters, three head coaches and two utility players.

The 95 nominees include every former student-athlete who was voted onto a previous CWS anniversary team (25th, 50th and all-decade teams), as well as individuals who played in the last 14 years as determined by a blue-ribbon panel from the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association, the Omaha World-Herald and NCAA staff. The final CWS Legends Team roster will be announced in early May and team members will be invited to the final College World Series at Rosenblatt Stadium.

Other family oriented activities during Opening Ceremonies are:
- A performance by the 45-member U.S. Air Force Heartland of America Band.
- A demonstration by the Special Ops Para-Commandos Parachute Team.
- NCAA academic award presentations and introduction of participating teams with video board highlights.
- A fireworks finale.

About the NCAA®
The NCAA is a membership-led nonprofit association of colleges and universities committed to supporting academic and athletic opportunities for more than 400,000 student-athletes at more than 1,000 member colleges and universities. Each year, more than 54,000 student-athletes compete in NCAA Championships in Divisions I, II and III sports. Visit ncaa.org and ncaa.com for more details about the Association, its goals and members and corporate partnerships that help support programs for student-athletes. The NCAA is proud to have the following elite companies as official Corporate Champions-AT&T, Capital One and Coca-Cola - and the following elite companies as official Corporate Partners-Enterprise, The Hartford, Hershey's, LG, Lowe's, Planters, State Farm and UPS.

About CWS, Inc. ®
College World Series of Omaha Inc. is a non-profit organization and the local organizing committee for the annual NCAA Division I Men's College World Series. The 2010 Men's College World Series will start on Saturday, June 19, with the first game of the Series Finals beginning on Monday, June 28. The Series Finals will conclude on Tuesday, June 29, or Wednesday, June 30.