The Big South Conference Council of Chief Executive Officers has unanimously voted to award the 2016 Women’s Basketball Championship to UNC Asheville, it was announced today.
"UNC Asheville is excited to have the Big South Conference Women's Basketball Championship return to Asheville and our campus in 2016," stated Janet R. Cone, Director of Athletics. "Working with Tina Porter, from the Asheville Convention and Visitors Bureau, our staff, and the BSC, the Bulldog Athletics Association Board will serve as the Local Organizing Committee and is committed to making this tournament a great success for the student-athletes, coaches, and fans."
UNC Asheville will host all rounds of the Women’s Championship for the sixth time, second-most in league history, and for the first time in the 3,200-seat Kimmel Arena on Asheville’s campus. The 2016 tournament will be Thursday-Sunday, March 10-13 - just the third time the event will be played over four consecutive days. Asheville previously hosted the Big South Women’s Basketball Championship in 1990, 1999, 2000, 2007 and 2008.
The Bulldogs won the 2007 Big South Championship held inside the Justice Center for their only tournament championship.
“The Big South Conference is excited to bring its version of March Madness to UNC Asheville and the mountains of North Carolina,” Big South Commissioner Kyle B. Kallander stated. “It is clear from the bid that UNC Asheville will do an outstanding job hosting the 2016 Big South Women’s Basketball Championship, and will provide an unbelievable experience for our student-athletes. We are appreciative of the commitment expressed by UNC Asheville’s leadership, Chancellor Mary Grant and Athletics Director Janet Cone, in supporting this event. We can’t wait for March!”
"We are extremely excited to be hosting the Big South Women's Basketball Championship at Kimmel Arena in March,” stated Bulldog head coach Brenda Mock Kirkpatrick. “I would like to thank our athletic director, Janet Cone, our Chancellor, Mary Grant, and the Bulldog Athletic Association for constructing and supporting a competitive bid giving the city of Asheville and our institution an opportunity to host our tournament. The majority of my colleagues in the Big South were passionate about bringing all eleven teams to one campus site and we are fortunate to have a city and university that is capable of providing a championship experience that will be second to none."
The 2016 Big South Championship will begin on March 10 with three opening round games, which will be available live on the Big South Network. The quarterfinals and semifinals will both be live on ESPN3, as well as the 2016 Championship game, which will be played at 2:00 p.m. on Sunday, March 13. More information on the 2016 events, including finalized game times and ticket information, will be announced at a later date.