NCAA brought national attention to University
April 4, 2002
SANTA CLARA, Calif. - As host of the recent 2002 NCAA Men's Basketball West Regional at the Compaq Center at San Jose, Santa Clara University shared the national spotlight with the city of San Jose and the four competing teams.
Statistics compiled and released today by the SCU Department of Athletics and Recreation showed that the Santa Clara University name in big letters on the basketball floor and on a banner at the scorer's table was seen by an estimated national television audience of 24 million people.
In addition, approximately 350 members of the print, photo and television press were credentialed to cover the event, including Sports Illustrated, Associated Press, USA Today, Reuters, ESPN, ABC, NBC and numerous other national and international outlets, including 13 of the top 15 U.S. media markets.
Final paid attendance of the sold-out crowd that watched Oklahoma defeat Missouri on March 23 was 18,040. Approximately 5,000 fans of the four schools (UCLA and the University of Arizona were the other two) traveled to the South Bay to attend the event. The estimated economic impact of the visitors was estimated at nearly $10 million.
As the host institution of the regional tournament, Santa Clara University handled every operational aspect of the tournament under the direction of the NCAA, including media relations, team travel and accommodations and event management. Director of Athletics Cheryl L. Levick served as the tournament director with Associate Director of Athletics Richard Kilwien handling the tournament manager duties. Associate Director of Media Relations David Wahlstrom was the event's media coordinator and Manager of Promotions and Community Outreach Lindsay Amstutz was the tournament's assistant manager.
Santa Clara received the bid to host the regional in 1998 and began planning at that time. In the fall of 2000, an executive committee consisting of representatives from the San Jose Sports Authority, the Compaq Center at San Jose and SCU was formed to manage the project. The group met quarterly and eventually held weekly and daily organizational meetings to ensure a first-class event.
The NCAA will begin accepting proposals to host future regionals next summer. All NCAA tournament sites have been selected through 2005 and Santa Clara athletic officials have indicated a desire to host again as soon as the opportunity presents itself beginning in 2006.