The NCAA Monday announced 25 preliminary-round sites for the 2014 and 2015 Division I Men’s Basketball Championships, and the state of Washington had two cities selected, Spokane in 2014 and Seattle in 2015. No NCAA Tournament games have been played in Spokane since 2003 and none in Seattle since 2004.
Spokane and Washington State University will host second- and third-round games March 20 and March 22 at Veterans Memorial Coliseum. Seattle the University of Washington will follow suit a year later, with second- and third-round contests at KeyArena March 20 and March 22, 2015.
This will mark Seattle’s 16th opportunity to host NCAA tournament games. The last time occurred March 18-20, 2004 when KeyArena played host to Michigan State, Nevada, Gonzaga, Valparaiso, Stanford, UTSA, Alabama and Southern Illinois. Nevada, a No. 10 seed, defeated No. 2 seed Gonzaga 91-72 in the upper half of the bracket before losing in the regional semifinals to Georgia Tech. No. 8 seed Alabama defeated Stanford in the lower half to move into the regional semis.
WSU and Spokane hosted Wisconsin, Weber State, Dayton, Tulsa, Connecticut, BYU, Stanford and San Diego March 20-22, 2003. No. 5 seed Wisconsin advanced from the upper half of the bracket, but lost to Kentucky in the regional semifinals. No. 5 UConn advanced out of the lower half.
Prior to 2004, Seattle last hosted early-round NCAA Tournament games in 1999. Seattle also hosted regional finals games in 1960, 1970, 1987, 1988, 1991 and 1993, and Final Fours in 1949, 1952, 1984, 1989 and 1995. The 1949 and 1952 Final Fours were played in Hec Edmundson Pavilion on the UW campus and the 1984, 1989, 1995 Finals Fours were played in the Kingdome.
Portland and the University of Oregon will also host second- and third-round games in 2015.