Anderson Believes Time is Now for Valley, Final Four Bid

The Valley of the Sun has hosted nearly every major sporting event.

The lone exception being a Final Four.

Arizona State Vice President for Athletics/Athletic Director Ray Anderson is trying to change that hoping to impress the Final Four Committee who will be in Phoenix this Tuesday with hosting vacancies for 2017, 2019 and 2020.

“The folks have been working hard for quite awhile,” Anderson told Sports360AZ.com’s Brad Cesmat of the committee who’s been working tirelessly to secure one of the three future bids. “I just happen to be the lucky one who steps into the athletic director’s seat here at ASU in a timely fashion and gets honored to get thrown in with a really strong group.”

Anderson, who arrived in Tempe back in January after leaving his job with the NFL, attending his first Final Four this past spring in North Texas and was blown away with the magnitude and seamlessness of the festivities.

“It’s an incredible, incredible event,” he explained to Cesmat.

The Valley is competing with seven other markets for the right to host. They include Atlanta, Dallas, Indianapolis, Minneapolis, New Orleans, San Antonio and St. Louis. Anderson believes the time is now for some west coast love.

“You know we haven’t had a Final Four west of Texas since 1995 when it was played in the Seattle Kingdome,” he said. “Since then every major conference except the Pac-12 has had the event in its’ footprint, in its’ backyard so it’s time for the Valley.”

He cited Phoenix’s mild spring climate as just one of the many benefits the city has in its favor. His pitch to the Final Four Committee will be simple and straight-forward.

“We’re a championship community that has held championship events successfully,” he explained. “This year we’ll have the Super Bowl, next year we’ll have the National Championship. Nobody can stand up and claim the weather and the environment and the destination positives that this city brings…there’s just so much to offer in this community.”

Maybe the State of Arizona will have their “One Shining Moment” in the coming years.