2013 NCAA Tourney bid will boost budget

Temple will host eight men’s NCAA Tournament teams at the Wachovia Center. For its efforts, the university will receive 10 percent of the net revenue.

Temple will host eight men’s NCAA Tournament teams at the Wachovia Center. For its efforts, the university will receive 10 percent of the net revenue.

Four years from now, the men’s and women’s basketball teams may or may not be playing in the NCAA Tournament, but the university will be there.

On Sept. 21, the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Committee chose Temple to host the first and second rounds of the 2013 men’s NCAA Tournament at the Wachovia Center. The university had drafted proposals to host either the first and second rounds or a regional from 2011-2013.

In 2004 and 2005, Temple served as host for the women’s first and second rounds and then a regional, respectively, but had not hosted the men since 1992. That year, Duke’s Christian Laettner hit a last-second jump shot to defeat Kentucky, 104-103, in overtime. 2013 will mark the 75th anniversary of the men’s NCAA Tournament.

“I think part of the reason they selected Philadelphia, and us, was because of that tradition,” Senior Associate Athletic Director Eric Roedl said.

Saint Joseph’s, which hosted the men’s NCAA Tournament at the Wachovia Center in 2009, helped Temple’s athletic department prepare its pitch, St. Joe’s Athletic Director Don DiJulia said.

“We met with them to explain what we did in 2007 to earn the 2009 bid,” DiJulia said. “They put together a bid over the summer. The biggest piece of the puzzle is gathering all the documentation you need. The Philadelphia Sports Congress, Visitors Bureau and Convention Center put together the hotel piece of the puzzle, and the Wachovia Center drafts its budget, so the host just needs to put together a budget for a few other game-related expenses, including travel, catering and access to tickets [St. Joe’s sold its 2009 ticket packages for six games for $220 each minus the service charge fees].

“Then, the NCAA wants to know how much the event is expected to generate since it pays the host a stipend. Assuming the host does not have to approach any local corporate partners or city agencies to cover any of the cost, the university can use the money for what it wants.”

Roedl said the amount of money the host university both spends and receives fluctuates based on the economy and the amount of revenue the event generates, but that Temple can expect to receive about 10 percent after dividing up the total amount with the Wachovia Center and the NCAA. The Philadelphia Sports Congress estimated the final “economic impact” of the event at around $10 million. Temple’s portion will go right back into the athletic department, which can use the money to pay staff salaries and/or improve operations and facilities, Roedl said.

“I think that’s the main benefit,” Director of Athletics Bill Bradshaw said. “Financially, in this challenging economy, you never know how you’re going to have the opportunity to make some significant revenue for the institution.”

That 10 percent is not guaranteed, however, Roedl added. At the conclusion of the Tournament, the NCAA grades the hosts. A host that encounters problems at hotels or its host building may have its stipend reduced.

For that reason, DiJulia said the host university’s athletic department begins preparing for the first and second rounds around 10 a.m. on Selection Sunday, when the men’s NCAA Tournament Selection Committee announces the 65 participating teams.

“We assigned one person to each of the eight teams that were chosen to play in Philadelphia,” DiJulia said. “As soon as we heard the names that evening, those people called the teams immediately and asked them what they needed. Our staff booked hotels, typed up team rosters, set up practice sites and arranged transportation from the airport to the hotel and the Wachovia Center.”

And despite those time and personnel commitments for just the first and second rounds of the men’s Tournament, Temple already submitted bids to host the women’s NCAA Tournament the exact same year. The university should hear back about that in a few weeks.

Jennifer Reardon can be reached at jennifer.reardon@temple.edu.

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