March Madness 2011
Turner Sports and NCAA March Madness® Sweep the Country to Celebrate First Ever National Bracket Day™ on Monday, March 14 With Integrations Planned On Campuses And In Major Markets
New NCAA® Division I Men’s Basketball Championship Format
Gives Fans Only One Day to Fill Out Their Brackets before Round One Tips-Off
Turner Sports, in conjunction with the NCAA, announced today the launch of a series of interactive initiatives to promote the first-ever National Bracket Day™
on Monday, March 14
. The day is designated to celebrate the upcoming NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship and urge fans to fill out their brackets before the first round of the tournament begins on Tuesday, March 15 on truTV.
The nationwide National Bracket Day™ outreach will feature a deployment of street teams distributing brackets in major markets and on key college basketball campuses around the country, expert tips on a live one-hour bracket special on March Madness on Demand (MMOD) on NCAA.com and a larger-than-life Bracket Lounge inside New York’s Time Warner Center that will serve as the epicenter for National Bracket Day™ (see attached artwork). Brackets and expert breakdowns of each region will also be available online via NCAA.com, SI.com and CBSSports.com.
“National Bracket Day™ is a rallying cry to fans of one of the most exciting and participatory sporting events of the year to use their time on March 14 wisely before the celebration of March Madness® tips off the following day,” said Christina Miller, senior vice president of Turner Sports strategy, marketing and programming.
“Creating a day where fans can debate the fate of their teams as they complete their brackets and celebrate the 68 schools and student-athletes who made it into the tournament is a great way to kick off March Madness,” said Greg Shaheen, interim executive vice president for championships and alliances.
National Bracket Day™ Activities include:
•Major Market/College Campus Street Teams: Street teams will be dispatched in Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, New York, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C., and on college campuses including Duke University, University of Kansas, San Diego State University and The Ohio State University.
•MMOD Live Show on NCAA.com: A live one-hour show (Noon – 1 p.m. ET) with host Jason Horowitz, analyst Marques Johnson and social media correspondent Kaylee Hartung previewing the tournament and its match ups with special guest analysts to join.
•Bracket Lounge at Time Warner Center in NYC: Opening on Monday, March 14 – and continuing until the conclusion of the Sweet 16 on Friday, March 25– the Bracket Lounge will serve as a hub for fans to follow the tournament. The lounge will feature four large screen TVs showing the tournament, eight computer kiosks for access to NCAA.com, March Madness On Demand and bracket games, updated brackets, interactive basketball shooting games and photo opportunities with virtual images of CBS Sports and Turner announcers.
Also on National Bracket Day™, the Bracket Lounge will host a special celebrity panel featuring a cross-section of people with college basketball interests including HLN’s Jane Valez-Mitchell, who will serve as the host, along with Turner Sports and CBS Sports studio analyst Charles Barkley, among others. This group will converge to discuss their thoughts on the tournament and tips for fans in attendance on filling out brackets.
Through a new 14-year agreement with the NCAA, beginning in 2011 Turner Sports and CBS Sports will make available live in their entirety every game from the Division I Men’s Basketball Championship across four national television networks: CBS, TBS, TNT and truTV. The tournament field will be announced exclusively on CBS’s NCAA Basketball Championship Selection Show on March 13 at 6 p.m. (ET) and the tournament will begin with the FIRST FOUR airing in primetime on Tuesday, March 15 and Wednesday, March 16 on truTV.
The NCAA strongly believes college sports should be appreciated for the benefits related to the participation of student-athletes, coaches and institutions in fair contests, and not the amount of money wagered on the outcome of the competition.
The NCAA is a membership-led nonprofit association of colleges and universities committed to supporting academic and athletic opportunities for more than 400,000 student-athletes at more than 1,000 member colleges and universities. Each year, more than 54,000 student-athletes compete in NCAA championships in Divisions I, II and III sports.
NCAA and March Madness are trademarks owned or licensed by the National Collegiate Athletic Association.