The NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Committee has formally started the process to identify the next round of Men’s Final Four locations for 2017-2020.
The committee made bid specifications available this week to prospective Final Four hosts, with the intention of announcing in November 2014 the next round of Final Four cities.
The 2014 Men’s Final Four will be played in North Texas, followed by Indianapolis in 2015 and Houston in 2016.
“We’re excited to begin what we expect to be a competitive bid process,” said Ron Wellman, chair of the Division I Men’s Basketball Committee and director of athletics at Wake Forest University. “Through the years the Final Four has evolved from one of the country’s favorite events into one of the world’s most popular events, so it’s a tremendous opportunity for cities to be the center of the sporting universe.”
Prospective bid cities have until Oct. 11 to submit a declaration of intent to bid, and they must submit a draft budget, hotel rates and confirmation of adherence to the NCAA’s bid specifications by Nov. 15. After the NCAA men’s basketball staff meets with representatives of each city’s host committee in December, the men’s basketball committee will announce finalists in January 2014.
Completed bids are due in May 2014, and the committee and staff will spend the summer reviewing each bid before making site visits to each finalist city next fall. Representatives from each finalist city will make in-person presentations to the committee during its annual fall meeting, followed by the announcement of the winning bids in November.
When evaluating prospective hosts, the committee will review each city’s competition venue, transportation and lodging, and the region’s overall commitment to the event. Venues must hold a minimum of 60,000 fans, and host cities or regions must be able to provide at least 10,000 full-service hotel rooms within reasonable proximity to the competition venue.
“The selection of future Final Four sites is an awesome responsibility for the committee and staff, as it determines the end of the road for student-athletes and coaches competing for a national championship,” said Dan Gavitt, the NCAA’s vice president of men’s basketball. “We look forward to working with the great host cities and NCAA member institutions who will bid for the opportunity to host the Final Four and provide the experience of a lifetime for student-athletes and basketball fans.”