NEWPORT NEWS, Va. - The Atlantic 10 Conference will play its 2013 Women's Basketball Championship game at the new state-of-the-art Barclays Center in Brooklyn, the league office announced on Thursday. The women's championship finale will be conducted in conjunction with the men's semifinal contests on Saturday, March 16 and will be televised on the ESPN Networks, while the first three rounds will once again be held at Michael J. Hagan '85 Arena on the campus of Saint Joseph's University in Philadelphia, March 8-11.
"We have made a commitment to further strengthen the Atlantic 10 as one of the premier women's basketball conferences in Division I," stated A-10 Commissioner Bernadette V. McGlade. "Without a doubt, relocating our championship game to Barclays Center is a key move in that commitment. It gives our top teams exceptional exposure on one of the biggest stages in the world. We are excited about showcasing A-10 women's basketball in Brooklyn in March."
The top 12 women's teams at the end of the regular season will advance to the Atlantic 10 Championship. First round action of the event begins on Friday, March 8 at Hagan Arena, with the top four teams earning a bye. Quarterfinal play continues on Saturday, March 9 in Philadelphia, with the Semifinal round aired live on CBS Sports Network on Sunday, March 10. The Championship game will be held on Saturday, March 16 at 7:00 p.m. at Barclays Center.
"Barclays Center is proud to announce its first women's basketball game," said Sean Saadeh, Vice President of Programming for Barclays Center. "Our venue's inaugural season will offer a strong lineup of college basketball, culminating with the Atlantic 10 Conference Championships for both the men and women."
The Atlantic 10 Conference sent seven women's basketball programs to postseason play last season. A-10 Champion Dayton and nationally-ranked St. Bonaventure were among the 64 teams selected to the 2012 NCAA Women's Basketball Championship, while Charlotte, Duquesne, Richmond, Saint Joseph's and Temple received invites to the 64-team Women's National Invitational Tournament (WNIT). Additionally, the A-10 closed out the 2011-12 campaign ranked ninth among the 31 Division 1 Conferences in the final RPI Report, while six league teams finished among the top 100 RPI teams in the country, including St. Bonaventure (14), Dayton (37), Richmond (46), Temple (52), Saint Joseph's (66) and Duquesne (91).
In September 2011, the Atlantic 10 Conference formed a five-year partnership with Barclays Center to bring the A-10 men's basketball tournament to Brooklyn and the new 18,200-seat sports and entertainment venue. The tournament is scheduled for March 14-17, 2013. It will mark the first time the A-10 Championship, which sends its champion to the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament, will be held in metropolitan New York City and the first time it will be played in a new facility.
For complete coverage of the 2012-13 Atlantic 10 women's basketball season, please visit the A-10 official website -www.atlantic10.com.
About the A-10
The Atlantic 10 Conference was formed in 1976, is currently comprised of 16 member institutions and sponsors 21 championship sports. The mission and goal of the Atlantic 10 is to preserve, protect, and enhance the academic and athletic pursuits of the membership. The conference is committed to integrity, educational excellence and providing quality equitable championship experiences for more than 6,000 student-athletes, coaches, and support staff. The member institutions of the Atlantic 10 are Butler University, the University of Dayton, Duquesne University, Fordham University, The George Washington University, La Salle University, University of Massachusetts, University of North Carolina at Charlotte, University of Rhode Island, University of Richmond, St. Bonaventure University, Saint Joseph's University, Saint Louis University, Temple University, Virginia Commonwealth University and Xavier University.
About Barclays Center
Scheduled to open on September 28, 2012, Barclays Center will be a major sports and entertainment venue in the heart of Brooklyn, New York. Developed by Brooklyn-based real estate developer Forest City Ratner Companies, and designed by the award-winning architectural firms AECOM (www.aecom.com/architecture) and SHoP Architects (www.shoparc.com), Barclays Center will have one of the most intimate seating configurations ever designed into a modern multi-purpose arena, with unparalleled sightlines and first-class amenities. Barclays Center will offer 18,200 seats for basketball and up to 19,000 seats for concerts, and will also have 100 luxury suites, four bars/lounges, three clubs, and 40/40 CLUB & Restaurant by American Express.
Barclays Center will host an extensive variety of events, including premier concerts, monthly major professional boxing cards, top college basketball, family shows, professional hockey, and the Brooklyn Nets. Some of the special programming that is already scheduled includes JAY Z, who will open the building on September 28 with the first of his eight concerts, Barbra Streisand, Andrea Bocelli, Justin Bieber, Journey, Leonard Cohen, The Who, BOB DYLAN & HIS BAND performing with MARK KNOPFLER, Rush, John Legend, UB40, Shaggy, Beres Hammond, Maxi Priest, Hezekiah Walker, Neil Young & Crazy Horse, The King's Men gospel concert with Kirk Franklin, Marvin Sapp, Donnie McClurkin, and Israel Houghton, 2012 Verizon's How Sweet the SoundTM, Russell Peters, the Barclays Center Classic men's college basketball tournament, Atlantic 10 Men's Basketball Championship, Coaches vs. Cancer Classic, Islanders vs. Devils game, Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus and Disney on Ice, Kellogg's® Tour of Gymnastics Champions, and the New York Masters equestrian show jumping. Current programming alliances with Barclays Center include Golden Boy Promotions, IMG, Feld Entertainment, Lagardère Unlimited, and the Brooklyn Academy of Music.
In addition to Barclays, the naming rights partner, Founding Partners for Barclays Center include American Honda Motor Co., Inc., American Express, Calvin Klein, Cushman & Wakefield, EmblemHealth, Foxwoods Resort Casino, GEICO, MetroPCS, Stolichnaya, and Ticketmaster. Other sponsors include: adidas, Anheuser-Busch, The Coca-Cola Company, Haier America, HighPoint Solutions, LIU Brooklyn, New York Marriott at the Brooklyn Bridge, SONY, Tyco, and Willis.
Located atop one of the largest transportation hubs in New York City, Barclays Center will be accessible by 11 subway lines, the Long Island Rail Road, and 11 bus lines.