As one piece of the all-encompassing support of the NCAA Tournament, The Big Hoopla community events creating a unique brand and destination in Dayton around the NCAA First Four.

In each of the last 17 years, and 31 times since 1970, in the University of Dayton and UD Arena have proven they are America’s #1 Host Site. Unparalleled support by fans from across the region confirms our community is home to America’s Most Passionate College Basketball Fans. During the last few years, the region has demonstrated the significant economic development potential the tournament games provide. In fact, since 2001, nearly $80 million in DIRECT economic impact can be attributed to hosting the NCAA Tournament – and this number does not include the billions of FREE positive earned media impressions generated annually with an estimated value in the millions.

  • The Big Hoopla Ticket Program

    Click to learn more about Ticket Program

    The Hoopla Ticket Program is the local organizing committee’s highly successful, charitable community outreach program. Each ticket is provided, free-of-charge to a military servicemen, a military family or local students. The program which donates thousands of tickets annually has garnered the financial support from multiple NBA players and national sponsors.

  • The Big Hoopla community and family celebration

    Click to learn more about: Hoopla Community and Family Celebration

  • The Big Hoopla stem challenge

    Click to learn more about: Hoopla STEM Challenge

    The Hoopla STEM Challenge is America’s first-ever event tying together the excitement and passion for college basketball and March Madness to the power of STEM education. The free basketball and education competition is for students (K-8) and includes an exciting “hot-shot” basketball contest and highly engaging science, technology, engineering and math demonstrations.

  • The Big Hoopla four miler

    Click to learn more about: Hoopla Four Miler

    The Hoopla Four Miler is a community fun-run on Selection Sunday in Dayton, Ohio. Each year, the race, which draws hundreds of participants from the tri-state area, is regarded as one of the best community races in the region.

Making history YEAR AFTER YEAR

The Big Hoopla has a rich history in its brief existence. Year after year, the Dayton region rallies behind a clear vision to produce incredible results, further demonstrating the seriousness with which we take our role as America’s #1 Host Site and home to America’s Most Passionate College Basketball Fans!

  • March 2016

    Hoopla STEM Challenge grows 400% since its inception in 2012.

    Most watched program on cable TV..

    For the sixth consecutive year, at least one of the four winning teams advanced beyond the next round.

  • March 2015

    First-ever halftime show developed organically by an early-round NCAA host site.

    Dayton became the first "First Four" team to play on its home court

  • November 2014

    NCAA praises the Dayton’s commitment to the First Four by awarding the 2016, 2017 and 2018 NCAA First Four to the region.

  • March 2014

    The NCAA First Four produces record viewership and ratings; increases of 34% and 32% respectively (compared to 2013).

    The Hoopla Ticket Program surpasses 10,000 tickets donated to Wright-Patt Airmen and local students.

    The Hoopla Challenge expands to include a STEM education component to engage students from across the Dayton region.

  • January 2014

    First Four Events Foundation Inc. receives 501(c)(3) designation from the IRS to support tax-deductible donations from individuals and organizations supporting the Hoopla Ticket Program.

  • March 2013

    UD Arena becomes the first-ever host site to surpass 100 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament games hosted.

  • March 2013

    The Dayton region produces a first-ever First Four sellout as part of 10-conseuctive games played in front of a sold out crowd during the opening week of the NCAA Tournament.

  • December 2012

    NCAA acknowledges the Dayton region’s commitment to the First Four by extending hosting agreement through 2015.

  • October 2012

    NCAA First Four Local Organizing Committee produces financial commitments to sellout the 2013 First Four 5 months before the tournament tips-off.

  • March 2012

    A first-ever visit from the US President, British Prime Minister & Ohio governor join fans from the Dayton region at UD Arena on the first night of the NCAA Tournament.

  • March 2012

    The Local Organizing Committee hosts the first-ever First Four Festival which draws 15,000 on Selection Sunday to downtown Dayton. Festival includes the first annual Hoopla Challenge.

  • December 2011

    First Four Events Inc. created to support the NCAA First Four Local Organizing Committee efforts in Dayton, Ohio.

  • March 2011

    VCU makes their historic tournament run from First Four to Final Four.

  • March 2011

    UD Arena hosts the first-ever First Four games as March Madness expands to 68 teams.

  • March 2011

    UD Arena hosts the first-ever Opening Round game of the NCAA Tournament as March Madness expands to 65 teams.