The American Athletic Conference and Mohegan Sun Arena have agreed to a multi-year agreement for Mohegan Sun to host the Conference's Women's Basketball Championship from 2018 through 2020. The 2018 championship will mark the fifth consecutive year the tournament has been played at the Uncasville, Connecticut arena.
"We are pleased that we are continuing our partnership with Mohegan Sun Arena," American Athletic Conference Commissioner Mike Aresco said. "Our women's championship has become the premier tournament in the country, thanks to our terrific fan support and thanks to the outstanding venue and the hospitality of everyone at Mohegan Sun. Our large crowds have enjoyed watching our teams compete, and our student-athletes, coaches and fans look forward to this great event each year. We thank Mitchell Etess, Amber Cox and the staff at Mohegan Sun for their work in making this a special event."
"We are thrilled to have The American women's basketball tournament returning to our property," said Mitchell Etess, Mohegan Sun CEO. "This has become a marquee event in our arena, complimenting a full menu of sports and entertainment events. We look forward to hosting these passionate women's basketball fans as they support their teams in the postseason."
The 2018 Championship will take place Saturday, March 3 through Tuesday, March 6. Since 2014, The American has averaged 30,334 fans during the four days of the championship and has led Division I conferences in overall tournament attendance in three of the last four years. The championship game and semifinals on the ESPN networks were also among the highest-rated nationally on cable television last season. The UCF-UConn semifinal matchup in 2017 had 442,000 viewers, while 404,000 viewers watched the title game between USF and UConn.
THE AMERICAN ATHLETIC CONFERENCE
The American Athletic Conference, a member of the NCAA, was reconstituted in 2013.
With the conference office in Providence, Rhode Island, The American is comprised of the following institutions: UCF, Cincinnati, UConn, East Carolina, Houston, Memphis, Navy (in football only), USF, SMU, Temple, Tulane and Tulsa.
Wichita State (basketball and Olympic sports) joins the Conference on July 1, 2017.
Under the leadership of Commissioner Mike Aresco, The American sponsors 21 championships – 10tu for men and 11 for women; is a member of the College Football Playoff; began new television partnerships with ESPN and CBS Sports in 2014 and has a marketing partnership with IMG College.