Dec. 7, 2009

NCAA News Release

INDIANAPOLIS---The NCAA today announced the primary fan interactive event at the NCAA Men’s Final Four will be revamped and rebranded as Bracket Town refreshed by Coca-Cola Zero®. The new branding of the event, formerly known as Hoop City and made possible with the support of CBS Sports, more closely aligns the five-day fan spectacular with the bracketed tournament structure made famous by the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship.

Bracket Town will debut at the 2010 Men’s Final Four in Indianapolis and represents a new strategic direction for the NCAA in its evolution of the Men’s Final Four experience.

“We want Bracket Town to provide fans with the same level of excitement and top-notch entertainment that comes with the Men’s Final Four games,” stated Greg Shaheen, senior vice president of basketball and business strategies for the NCAA.  “Our long-term vision is to have our fan events model the bracketed championships in an expanded timeframe and geographical reach allowing fan participation out into the regional sites leading to the Final Four.”

Bracket Town is being rebuilt from the ground up and will contain entirely new interactive exhibits, including an NCAA Championships Zone, where fans can step into a championship experience from some of the other 23 NCAA sports, and a number of new technology-based interactives with activities such as CBS Sports’ famous “AT&T’s at the Half” Television Studio.  There also will be a new large scale gaming area featuring Electronic Arts’ NCAA Basketball video games and a 2010 Bracket Town video game tournament.

The Bracket Town Competition Zones will feature 12 basketball courts for exhibitions, basketball training, and fan games, including State Farm’s fan 3-Point and Skills Challenge Courts, the Coca-Cola fan Slam Dunk court, and will serve as the site of the POWERADE 3v3 Tournament.  Bracket Town also will debut its new 2,500 seat Center Court Arena, which will play host to numerous exciting fan activities – more information related to the schedule of activities for Center Court will be forthcoming..  Throughout the Final Four weekend, Bracket Town also will be the site of appearances and autograph sessions with former NCAA players and coaches, as well as sports personalities.

“Enhancing the NCAA college basketball experience for fans is an important part of our role as a long-time NCAA Corporate Champion,” said John Egan, group director, sports marketing, Coca-Cola North America.  “Coke Zero is the perfect complement to NCAA March Madness®, and Bracket Town refreshed by Coca-Cola Zero will be the ultimate fan experience.”

In addition to the involvement and support of CBS Sports and some of the NCAA’s Corporate Champions and Corporate Partners, for the first time the NCAA will be working with the local and regional community to allow for fan activation opportunities for Indiana-based companies at Bracket Town.

 “Our goal is to create a fan experience that equals the Men’s Final Four’s status as one of the largest and most captivating sporting events in the country,” stated Shaheen. “Bracket Town is the next step in a broad plan in evolving a winning combination of an engaging and authentic experience for fans and an enhanced platform for the NCAA’s Corporate Champions and Corporate Partners.”

Bracket Town will be located at the Indianapolis Convention Center and will welcome fans Thursday, April 1 – Monday, April 5, 2010.

For more information on Bracket Town and other events and initiatives surrounding the 2010 Men’s Final Four, visit www.NCAA.com/finalfour.

 

About the NCAA

The NCAA is a membership-led nonprofit association of colleges and universities committed to supporting academic and athletics 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 www.NCAA.org and www.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, Coca-Cola and General Motors - and the following elite companies as official Corporate Partners - Enterprise, Hershey’s, The Hartford, LG, Lowe's, Sheraton and State Farm.