HERSHEY, Pa.  – College basketball just got a whole lot sweeter! Today, the Hershey Company (NYSE:HSY) announced a five-year extension with CBS Sports, Turner Sports and the NCAA to continue its role as “Official Confectionery Partner.” Hershey’s iconic brand, Reese’s, will return as title sponsor of the Reese’s College All-Star Game and will continue to host a kick-off to Final Four weekend with Reese’s Final Four Friday.

“Reese’s brand is all about fun and NCAA March Madness is arguably the most fun, exciting and highly-anticipated event in college sports,” said Kristen Riggs, Senior Marketing Director, Reese’s brand. “We want to inspire fans and consumers to go for it and get into the game day spirit even more passionately than before.  Whether on the basketball court, cheering in the stands or enjoying the action from home, Reese’s wants to be a part of your celebrations; we couldn’t be more thrilled to continue our partnership with the NCAA.” 

The Hershey Company has been an official partner of the NCAA since 2009, and the Reese’s brand has played a central role in activating this sponsorship since the beginning with dynamic programming including creative advertising, social and digital media, in-store promotions and activations on-site in final four markets.

Reese’s Brand Brings Perfect Combination of Chocolate and Peanut Butter to Final Four Phoenix.

For the ninth consecutive year, Reese’s brand will bring its iconic pairing of chocolate and peanut butter to the Final Four® by headlining the Reese’s College All-Star Game. Taking place this year on Friday, March 31st at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Phoenix, Arizona, the game is set to feature 20 of the finest NCAA Division I senior college basketball student-athletes from across the country. The game tips off at 6:37pm EST and will be broadcast LIVE on CBS Sports Network, with Carter Blackburn, Steve Lappas and Allie LaForce calling the action. Current college basketball head coaches Josh Pastner (Georgia Tech) and Tad Boyle (Colorado) will lead the East and West teams. 

The Reese’s College All-Star Game will be played as part of events during the fifth annual Reese’s Final Four Friday. The family-friendly event is free to the public, and features each of the Final Four teams in their final open practice before Saturday’s national semifinal games. A variety of special entertainment, tributes and fan activities will take place throughout the day.

“The NCAA is thrilled that The Hershey Company has decided to renew its partnership and that it will continue supporting our student-athletes at championships as an NCAA Corporate Partner,” said Dan Gavitt, NCAA senior vice president for basketball.  “Our fans really enjoy the creative marketing projects and campaigns that Reese’s brand puts together, and we look forward to working with the strong Reese’s brand for many years to come.”

“The Hershey Company has been a great partner for many years and is an important part of the NCAA Corporate Marketing family,” said Devron Edwards, Vice President, NCAA Partnership, CBS Sports. “NCAA Basketball and Reese's brand are a perfect combination and both are loved by fans across the country.  We are excited Reese's brand will continue to support the Reese's College All-Star game on CBS Sports Network and we look forward to continued success together. “

“The Hershey Company and Reese’s brand are iconic brands that have contributed to the success and enthusiasm around college sports, notably Final Four weekend,” said Katy Mollica, vice president, property partnerships, Turner Sports. “With brand strategy that extends well beyond on the ground events, to include retail and nationwide marketing activations, we are excited to continue to sweeten the experience for fans nationwide.”

There’s no greater joy than the thrill of victory in March. The only thing that could make it better? Having that unique combination of peanut butter and chocolate that delivers the euphoria you crave – the same excitement March Madness® delivers every year! For more information and to get in on the action, follow Reese’s brand on Facebook at Facebook.com/Reeses and Twitter @ReesesPBCups, and stay tuned for the brand’s #ReesesFTW social media campaign throughout March Madness.