For the third time in the last 11 years, the City of Cleveland will play host to first and second round games of the NCAA Men's Basketball Championship when Cleveland State serves as the host to games on March 18 & 20, 2011 at Quicken Loans Arena. The announcement was made by the NCAA last Monday afternoon.
"It is good that the NCAA has seen fit to bring NCAA tournament games back to Cleveland," CSU Director of Athletics Lee Reed said. "The games we hosted in both 2000 and 2005 were some of the best in the tournament those years and it is great to be able showcase Cleveland State, Quicken Loans Arena and the City of Cleveland off to the nation.
"More importantly, this is another way to bring added value to our season ticket holders, the group that does so much to make our men's basketball program a success."
"Our thanks goes to the NCAA Division I Championship selection committee for selecting the city of Cleveland as the destination for this premier event," said Cavaliers and Quicken Loans Arena President, Len Komoroski. "Especially rewarding, is the chance to work again with great partners at Cleveland State University and the Greater Cleveland Sports Commission in producing such a high profile, positive event in downtown Cleveland. We look forward to delivering a best-ever experience for all participants and fans."
"We are thrilled to have another opportunity to showcase Cleveland to the athletes and fans that will travel to our City for these competitions. This is another example of our community working together to offer superior, world-class service and commitment to ensure successful championships and rewarding experiences for student-athletes, coaches and fans," David Gilbert, President and CEO of the Greater Cleveland Sports Commission said.
This will be the third time that Cleveland State has served as the host to first and second round games in the men's championship and the third time that Quicken Loans Arena will serve as the site of games in either the men's or women's basketball tournament.
Cleveland State previously hosted games in the Wolstein Center in both 2000 and 2005 with Michigan State advancing from the sub-regional in 2000 to win the national championship.
Quicken Loans Arena previously served as the site of a NCAA Women's Basketball Championship in 2006 and the NCAA Women's Final Four in 2007. Tennessee defeated Rutgers, 59-46, to claim its seventh NCAA championship in 2007.
"One of the factors that helped to bring the tournament back to Cleveland was the great job that everybody did with hosting the Women's Final Four," Reed said. "From the Quicken Loans Arena staff, to the Greater Cleveland Sports Commission and the staffs at all of the area hotels, everybodypitched in to show that the City of Cleveland is capable of hosting events of this magnitude."
Ticket information will be available in the near future though, as in the past, CSU season ticket holders gain priority points for seating and ticket purchases for all postseason action, including the 2011 NCAA Men's Basketball first and second round games.