25th Annual Big West Basketball Tournament FONT> March 12 -15, 2008 - Anaheim Convention Center Arena I>
The 25th Annual Big West Conference Women's Basketball Tournament will be held Wednesday, March 12 through Saturday, March 15 at The Arena at the Anaheim Convention Center. The UC Santa Barbara Gauchos collected their 13th regular season title, 12th in the last 13 years, with a 15-1 mark and received the No. 1 seed and a bye to the semifinals of the women's tournament. UC Santa Barbara also claimed the No. 1 seed on the men's side, marking the first time since 2003 that the top seed from both the men's and women's tournaments came from the same school. UCSB was the same school to accomplish the feat in 2003 with the women winning the tournament title and the men losing in the semifinals.
Also earning a free pass to a semifinal matchup is first-year member UC Davis, who finished the season second in the league standings with a 12-4 record. UC Santa Barbara, entering the week having won 16 of the last 17 contests, and UC Davis play their first contests of the tournament Friday, March 14 against undetermined opponents.
UC Riverside, who played most of the season without 2006-07 Big West Player of the Year Kemie Nkele, secured the third spot in the conference with a 10-6 record. The Highlanders enter the tournament as the two-time defending champion after defeating UC Santa Barbara in the prior two championship games by scores of 70-67 (‘07) and 59-58 (‘06). This season UC Riverside must win three straight games to grab their third straight tournament title and the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.
This is the eighth consecutive year that the Big West Basketball Tournament will be held at the ACC Arena. Located directly across the street from the basketball action is the Disneyland Resort and the Downtown Disney District. The Tourney Fan Fest will be held in conjunction with the 2008 tournament. Fan Fest activities will take place on Thursday and Friday of tournament week and include the Big West Mascot Mayhem at the ESPN Zone and the Battle of the Big West Bands at the Downtown Disney District.
Single session tickets for the 2008 Big West Men's and Women's Basketball Tournament are on sale now. Fans can purchase tickets through the Anaheim Convention Center Arena Box Office (714-765-8980) or through the Ticketmaster webstie The tournament will be held Wednesday, March 12 through Saturday, March 15 at The Arena at the Anaheim Convention Center.
In an attempt to relieve some of the traffic and parking congestion caused by the convergence of the Big West Basketball Tournament and the Expo West (Natural Products) Convention on Friday and Saturday of tournament week, the Big West Conference and Downtown Disney have teamed up to provide overflow parking for tournament patrons.
Fans can park in Downtown Disney lots for free for up to five hours with validation. The Big West Tournament ticket or credential can be used for that validation. Any time after the five hour block, fans would need to pay the going Downtown Disney rate. A shuttle will be provided to transport fans from the Downtown Disney lots and valet loop in front of the ESPN Zone directly to the arena and back.
The Big West has contracted Coach America to provide the shuttles between Downtown Disney and the Arena during the following dates and times: Thursday, March 13: 3:00 pm – 7:00 pm Friday, March 14: 11:00 am – 11:00 pm Saturday, March 15: 11:00 am – 3:00 pm
There are numerous exciting activities happening around Downtown Disney and the Anaheim Convention Center to pass the time when your team is not competing.
Mascot Mayhem at ESPN Zone Thursday, March 13 at 4:15pm The 6th annual Mascot Mayhem will be held at the ESPN Zone. This event features Big West mascots competing against each other in various games and obstacles.
Battle of the Big West Bands at the Downtown Disney District Friday, March 14 at 3:30pm The 5th annual Battle of the Big West Bands will be held inside the Downtown Disney District. The event will feature Big West bands going head to head in a musical battle.
Downtown Disney District There are many restaurants and gift shops in the Downtown Disney District. You will find the ESPN Zone and the House of Blues to tickle your taste palette. Go exploring at the Rainforest Café or enjoy some music while dining at Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen. If that doesn’t fit your fancy, check out Catal or La Brea Bakery. Before or after dinner, shop till you drop in the World of Disney and many other stores including Anne Geddes and Disney Vault 28.
DIRECTIONS TO THE ANAHEIM CONVENTION CENTER ARENA CENTER>
From the north: Take Interstate 5 and exit Harbor Blvd. Turn right off the freeway. Head to Katella Ave and turn right. Disneyland will be on the right and the Convention Center will be on the left. Follow signs and turn left into parking structure.
From the south: Take I-5 and exit Katella Ave. Turn left off the freeway. Follow Katella past Harbor Blvd. and make a left into the Convention Center.
Carpools from the south: If you have at least two passengers in your car, you may take the carpool lane and exit the freeway via Disney Way. Please make sure to get into the carpool lane on I-5 prior to the 57 Freeway exit. This is the only opportunity to make the Disney Way exit. From the Disney Way exit, follow to Harbor Blvd and make a left. Head to Katella Ave. and turn right. Disneyland will be on the right and the Convention Center will be on the left. Follow signs and turn left into parking structure.
Tournament History: The Big West Conference Men's and Women's Basketball Tournament is the longest running postseason tournament in the West. The tournament is in its thirty-third season overall and twenty-fifth season for the women and will once again send its champions to the NCAA Tournaments as it has since the 1971-72 season.
Venue: The Anaheim Convention Center Arena hosts the Big West Basketball Tournament for the eighth consecutive year. Overall, it is the fourteenth time, the ACC Arena has hosted the event.
Television: The women's championship game is televised on Saturday afternoon at 12:00 pm by Prime Ticket. The men's championship game is televised on Saturday night at 8:00 pm by ESPN2.
Surrounding Area: The Anaheim Resort area is home to one of the world's most famous destinations, Disneyland and Disney's California Adventure Park. The Disneyland Resort is home to millions of visitors per year. Downtown Disney, located between the two parks is home to the Big West Fan Fest throughout t ournament week. The ESPN Zone in Downtown Disney is home to the Big West Mascot Mayhem.