NCAA Business Of March Madness Will Rake In $300+ Million For Houston

By CultureBanx Team

  • The estimated impact from the NCAA Final Four in Houston this year expects the city to see a $300M economic boost
  • An actual Final Four team makes $10M, paid out over six  years

Houston is prepared to host its fourth NCAA Final Four tournament along with its estimated economic windfall of more than $300 million coming to the city. Adding to that excitement is the fact that the University of Houston is the No. 1 tournament seed in the Midwest region, and the Cougars have the potential to make a Final Four run. This March Madness event in a city with a 22.6% Black population, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, will have millions of eyes, dollars and opportunities to capitalize on.

Why This Matters: For fans looking ahead to the Final Four in Houston, the tickets will be costly. Data from ticket marketplace Gametime has the median ticket price for the national semifinals at $619, while the median price for the national championship game is “only” $427. Spectators will be ready to shell out money for a full sports-fueled weekend experience in the Bayou City, helping to drive up the positive economic impact.

“Travel, tourism, and hospitality are key drivers for the city’s economy,” Mayor Sylvester Turner said to Houston Public Media.

For colleges across the country participating in the tournament, this year the NCAA will send $170 million to schools from the “Basketball Performance Fund.” Specifically, $10 million for participating in the competition. Total NCAA revenue distribution for 2023 will top $638 million, according to NCAA documents.

Also, March Madness advertising sales are outpacing last season, with CBS Sports and Warner Bros. Discovery Sports “virtually sold out” of inventory, according to Adweek.

Collectively, the two TV partners have “significantly” surpassed last year’s record haul of $1 billion in ad sales for the men’s NCAA tournament.

It’s not just ad sales on the rise this year, so are the sports wagers. A new survey from the American Gaming Association finds that 68 million American adults, or roughly a quarter of that population, plan to bet a total of $15.5 billion on the NCAA Division I men’s basketball tournament.

What’s Next: Houston has actively participated in the sports realm over the last decade by hosting two Super Bowls, five World Series Baseball championships, and four NCAA men’s basketball tournaments.The city will also host six FIFA World Cup matches at NRG Stadium in 2024. Experts say it will be the equivalent of hosting six Super Bowls in a month’s time, with a projected economic impact of well over $1.3 billion.

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