March Madness courts: NCAA debuts new-look hardwood designs
The NCAA announced today a new series of court designs to be used during the NCAA Division I men’s basketball tournament, part of a redesign of all 90 championships beginning with the 2015-16 championship season.
The men’s basketball court designs reflect the new cohesive brand for all NCAA championships. Feedback received about the previous court design was that courts looked alike, with little variation from site to site. The appearance was adjusted to help fans watching the games on television visually discern the difference from one site to another. This was done through different color schemes and court content from site to site and round to round.
The tonal wood color on the court gives it a modern but still classic, clean look. The March Madness logo at center court for the first and second rounds replaces the blue disk to capture the excitement of the tournament. Site specific logos are used for the First Four and regional courts to build equity in the new system.
The unity ribbons were removed, along with the NCAA word marks, as part of the new design. The NCAA will honor and celebrate the military at this year’s Final Four.
The round name in the end zone apron on all courts will be a decal and replaced by the host/venues with the name of the next round on the off day.
The overall design, colors, logos and other markings are placed in a progression by round, culminating with the look of the Final Four court.
The colors selected for all courts were part of the NCAA color palette, which served as the basis for the new creative elements. There was no specific designation or assignment to match specific colors to specific sites. The colors were applied at random for all sites, all rounds.
The First Four and first/second round courts will retain the same color and other markings, other than the host decals, in subsequent years. They will be assigned to ensure that only one of each color is used each day (Thursday/Saturday or Friday/Sunday).
The regional courts will likely remain similar every year other than the host and round-specific decals, but may show a different color to match the progression to the new Final Four court look each year.
Connor Sports, the Official Court Supplier for the Men’s Basketball Championship, helped bring the creative designs to life through their industry experience. Over the past several months, Connor Sports provided paint and stain samples to the NCAA to ensure the creativity jumped from concept to implementation across 14 championship courts which will be installed over the month of March.