hosting the big dance

Houston scores coveted host spot for NCAA Final Four tournament

Houston scores coveted host spot for NCAA Final Four tournament

Final Four basketball court
Houston sports fans have a chance to attend the big dance in 2023.  Courtesy photo

If the recent Super Bowl proved anything, it’s that Houston is the perfect place for a big game. Well aware of that fact, the masterminds at the NCAA have announced that Houston will again host the NCAA Men’s Final Four in 2023.

Hoops fans (and anyone dealing with the sports-related traffic) will remember that Houston has hosted the 2011 and 2016 Final Fours at NRG Park. Houston has also hosted three NCAA Regionals at NRG and will host a 2020 Regional at Toyota Center.

Selling the charms and key assets Houston offers as a sports city, Mayor Sylvester Turner made a big push for the big dance when he recently visited the NCAA leadership in Boston. Safe to say that Turner is pleased with the news.

“Returning the Final Four to Houston in 2023 will be a slam dunk. I’m overjoyed that the NCAA recognized this fact,’’ Turner said in a statement. “From our restaurants, to our convention center, hotels, and retail spaces, Houston is poised to provide a total fan experience. The 2016 Final Four in Houston was a huge success. We will also host an NCAA Men’s Regional in 2020. So when the Final Four returns, we will be seasoned veterans in hosting the thrilling Men’s Division I college basketball championship competition.’’

Houston was among several cities vying for a Final Four appearance between 2023 and 2026. Phoenix (2024), San Antonio (2025), and Indianapolis (2026) have also been named host cities.

“NRG Stadium has clearly become the top venue in the nation for exciting sports championships over the past couple of years,” said Harris County Judge Ed Emmett, also in a statement. “From last year’s overtime game in Super Bowl LI to Villanova’s buzzer beater to win the NCAA men’s basketball championship two years ago, NRG is home to sports excitement. I am extremely happy that the NCAA has chosen Houston and Harris County to once again host their 2023 NCAA Men’s Final Four tournament.