Today, Representative Mike Turner (OH-10), led Ohio Senators Rob Portman and Sherrod Brown along with Representatives Steve Chabot (OH-01), Warren Davidson (OH-08), Marcia Fudge (OH-11), Bill Johnson (OH-06), David Joyce (OH-14), Marcy Kaptur (OH-09), Robert Latta (OH-05) and Brad Wenstrup (OH-02) in sending a letter to the NCAA, in support of the University of Dayton hosting the First Four in the years 2023, 2024, 2025 and 2026.
“The Dayton region has hosted the First Four every year since the games began in 2011. Before that, opening round games were played in Dayton during the previous decade,” the Members wrote. “The First Four games have routinely filled the University of Dayton arena to capacity and the games have attracted praise and national media attention. No state in the nation has fans more passionate and leaders more dedicated to making the games a success than Ohio.”
Since opening its doors in 1969, The University of Dayton Arena has hosted 123 NCAA tournament games, more than any other venue in the country, and according to the Dayton Development Coalition, from 2001 to the present, the NCAA tournament delivered an estimated $85 million in direct economic impact to the Dayton region.
A PDF of the letter is available here and the text of the letter is available below.
NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Committee
700 West Washington Street
Indianapolis, Indiana 46204
Dear Members of the Committee:
We are writing to express our strong support for the University of Dayton’s bid to continue to host the First Four in 2023, 2024, 2025, and 2026, and the University’s application to host First and Second Round games of NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championships.
The Dayton region has hosted the First Four every year since the games began in 2011. Before that, opening round games were played in Dayton during the previous decade. The First Four games have routinely filled the University of Dayton arena to capacity and the games have attracted praise and national media attention. No state in the nation has fans more passionate and leaders more dedicated to making the games a success than Ohio.
We are honored to have hosted the First Four, and grateful to the NCAA for the opportunity. The University of Dayton and community leaders remain committed to supporting the First Four through efforts that embody the spirit of the tournament and the enthusiasm of its fans.
The community supports the First Four by partnering with Wright-Patterson Air Force Base to honor our military heroes during halftime. The games support a Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) learning experience through a series of events, including exhibits set-up by the Air Force Research Laboratory and a halftime basketball shootout with hundreds of local school children who learn about the science behind the game.
We hope that you will continue to choose the University of Dayton to tip-off the NCAA Men’s Division I Basketball Championship. In choosing Dayton, you will continue a long, successful partnership with the Dayton region and provide the student-athletes, coaches, and fans with an unforgettable experience.
Michael R. Turner
Marcia L. Fudge
David P. Joyce
Robert E. Latta