New York, 2017-Mar-21 — /EPR Retail News/ — The DICK’S Sporting Goods High School Nationals returns to New York City for the fourth consecutive year, featuring the best high school basketball talent in the country. All eight of the boys teams selected to play in the ninth annual tournament are ranked in the Top 20 of the USA Today Super 25 Expert Rankings, and all four of the girls teams are ranked in the Top 20. This year’s pool will include five state champions.
In the boys field, five of the top ten ranked teams in the nation will participate, including: La Lumiere (Ind.), IMG Academy (Fla.), Findlay Prep (Nev.), Montverde Academy (Fla.) and 2016 DICK’S Nationals Champion Oak Hill Academy (Va.). Two other boys teams competing in the tournament won their respective state championships, including Greensboro Day School (N.C.) and Shadow Mountain High School (Ariz.).
The girls field includes three teams that won their respective state championships including Miami Country Day School (Fla.), Seton Catholic (Ariz.) and St. Frances (Md.).
The three-day, single-elimination tournament begins Thursday, March 30, at noon with the boys quarterfinals on ESPNU, and continues on Friday, March 31, with the girls semifinals (11 a.m. & 1 p.m., ESPNU) and boys semifinals (3 p.m. & 5 p.m., ESPN2). The tournament culminates on Saturday, April 1, with the girls championship at 10 a.m. on ESPN2, and the boys championship game at noon on ESPN. Five McDonald’s All-American representatives will participate in the tournament, including Billy Preston (Oak Hill), Brian Bowen (La Lumiere), Jaren Jackson (La Lumiere), P.J. Washington (Findlay Prep) and Trevon Duval (IMG). Tickets are available now at dicksnationals.com. General admission tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for students.
While highlighting the nation’s top talent, this year’s tournament will also raise awareness around the financial crisis in youth sports. Billions of dollars have been cut from youth sports in recent years, and by 2020, 27 percent of U.S. public high schools may not have sports programs(1). DICK’S Sporting Goods and the DICK’S Sporting Goods Foundation have pledged more than $50 million to support teams and raise awareness of the issue.
In November 2016, DICK’S Sporting Goods launched its Sports Matter green shoelace movement to support youth sports nationwide. Athletes and coaches playing at the tournament are invited to wear green laces to support their peers affected by the youth sports funding crisis. Fans can join the movement by purchasing Sports Matter green shoelaces at any DICK’S store or on dicks.com. DICK’S donates $2 from every shoelace sale to Sports Matter. On-court graphics and a variety of digital displays will also highlight The DICK’S Foundation’s Sports Matter program, dedicated to helping to save underfunded youth sports.
To be eligible to be selected to the tournament, participating schools must be a four-year high school, independent or public, and have their respective governing body’s permission to participate. Tournament teams are chosen by a selection committee.
2017 DICK’S Sporting Goods High School Nationals Tournament Participating Boys and Girls Teams
Rankings per USA Today HS Sports
Boys – School (State) / 2016-2017 Record
No. 2 La Lumiere School (Ind.) / 26-1
No. 4 IMG Academy (Fla.) / 26-1
No. 5 Findlay Prep (Nev.) / 33-3
No. 7 Montverde Academy (Fla.) / 24-4
No. 8 Oak Hill Academy (Va.) / 39-4
No. 10 Shadow Mountain (Ariz.) / 27-0
No. 15 Wasatch Academy (Utah) /24-4
No. 19 Greensboro Day School (N.C.) / 33-3
Girls – School (State) / 2016-2017 Record
No. 6 Miami Country Day (Fla.) / 29-1
No. 8 Hamilton Heights Christian Academy (Tenn.) / 28-1
No. 12 St. Frances Academy (Md.) / 30-0
No. 17 Seton Catholic (Ariz.) / 30-3
(1) Source: Up2Us Sports
About DICK’S Sporting Goods, Inc.
Founded in 1948, DICK’S Sporting Goods, Inc. is a leading omni-channel sporting goods retailer offering an extensive assortment of authentic, high-quality sports equipment, apparel, footwear and accessories. As of January 28, 2017, the Company operated more than 675 DICK’S Sporting Goods locations across the United States, serving and inspiring athletes and outdoor enthusiasts to achieve their personal best through a blend of dedicated associates, in-store services and unique specialty shop-in-shops dedicated to Team Sports, Athletic Apparel, Golf, Lodge/Outdoor, Fitness and Footwear. Headquartered in Pittsburgh, PA, DICK’S also owns and operates Golf Galaxy and Field & Stream specialty stores, as well as DICK’S Team Sports HQ, an all-in-one youth sports digital platform offering free league management services, mobile apps for scheduling, communications and live scorekeeping, custom uniforms and FanWear and access to donations and sponsorships. DICK’S offers its products through a content-rich eCommerce platform that is integrated with its store network and provides customers with the convenience and expertise of a 24-hour storefront. For more information, visit the Press Room or Investor Relations pages at dicks.com.
About Paragon Marketing Group
Paragon Marketing Group is a corporate consulting agency specializing in sports, entertainment and cause related sponsorships. Paragon, owns and operates the GEICO State Champions Bowl Series and has partnered with ESPN over the past 14 years to deliver over 500 live high school football and basketball telecasts featuring many of the top teams and players in the nation. Paragon’s consulting clients include Bayer, Gatorade, PNC Bank, Toyota, Yokohama and UCHealth.
ESPN, Inc. is the leading multinational, multimedia sports entertainment company featuring the broadest portfolio of multimedia sports assets with over 50 business entities. Based in Bristol, Conn., with approximately 4,000 employees (approximately 8,000 worldwide), ESPN Plaza includes nearly 1.2 million square feet in 18 buildings on 123 acres (additional 500,000 sq. ft. rented nearby). The company is 80 percent owned by ABC, Inc., an indirect subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company. The Hearst Corporation holds a 20 percent interest in ESPN. In 2015, ESPN produced more than 51,000 hours of live event/studio programming across platforms.
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