First Four tournament games kick off with Big Hoopla in Dayton

Mark your calendars to attend the Big Hoopla March 15, followed by the NCAA First Four Division I Men’s Basketball Championship games March 17-18 in Dayton.

The Big Hoopla is a series of events for basketball fans to join the excitement before the upcoming tournament. According to the Big Hoopla committee, Dayton, Ohio, remains the epicenter of college basketball because of the fans unwavering support.

March 15 starts with the Big Hoopla Four Miler road race at Carillon Historical Park. Check-in and registration begin at 9 a.m. at the park's main building, 1000 Carillon Blvd., Dayton. The race starts at 10 a.m. Pre-register at

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All runners will receive a long-sleeved T-shirt and finisher medal. The 4-mile course will start and finish at the Carillon Historical Park. A post-race celebration will follow at Carillon.

The Big Hoopla STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) Challenge at Chaminade-Julienne High School follows the race. This free basketball "hot-shot" and educational event is open to students in kindergarten through eighth grade. Check-in will begin at noon with opening ceremony at 1 p.m. Pre-registration is open at

Hands on exhibits will engage students from regional and national partners, including the Wright-Patterson Education & Outreach program, Air Force Research Laboratory, Air Force Institute of Technology and the 88th Air Base Wing.

The Big Hoopla will host a free Family Celebration Festival March 15 on Fifth Street in Dayton’s Oregon Historic District. College basketball fans can come to the Oregon District to enjoy a family-friendly event.

Teams will have NCAA First Four open practices at the UD Arena from 5 to 8 p.m. March 16, and from noon to 3 p.m. March 17. The NCAA Division Men’s Basketball Championship First Four Games will be March 17-18 at the UD Arena. The games begin at 6:30 p.m. and 9:10 p.m. on both days (Tip-off times subject to change.)

For more information on pre-game events, visit For the latest updates on the 2020 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament, visit

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