Indy's loss is Arizona's gain

November 18, 2008
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usahoopsUSA Basketball today announced it will move its headquarters from Colorado Springs to Glendale, Ariz. Indianapolis and Louisville were the other front runners. Indianapolis officials announced earlier this year they were out of the running.

It has been long rumored that USA Basketball would make the west side Phoenix suburb its home thanks to long-time hometown executive Jerry Colangelo, who assembled the 2008 gold medal team.

Indianapolis’ central location and strong reputation for hosting events, proximity to the NCAA and National Federation of State High School Associations—both key USA Basketball members—and access to the Indiana Pacers’ personnel and facilities were factors sources said put the city in favor with USA Basketball officials. And the city, which is already home to USA Track & Field, USA Gymnastics, USA Diving and U.S. Synchronized Swimming, has proven to be a successful home for national governing bodies.

But in the end, Colangelo’s clout was difficult to trump. Colangelo, who is Phoenix Suns chairman and managing director of USA Basketball’s 2006-2008 Men’s Senior National Team program, recently was elected chair of USA Basketball’s board of directors for the 2009-2012 term.

USA Basketball is planning to build a new training facility to stage year-round signature basketball competitions and festivals, exhibition games, youth instructional programs, skills camps and coaching clinics and conferences. Executive offices also will be built as part of the project.
  • It's not what you know, it's who you know. This would have been a nice coup for Indy, especially with the training center development.
  • Here is the latest economic impact info released on this project:
    The complex will be located immediately adjacent to Arena and University of Phoenix Stadium.
    Components of the project include: Executive Offices for USA Basketball, USA Basketball Multi-Court Training Facility, a 150-Room Hotel and Midwestern University Sports Medicine Clinic. An economic impact study completed by Elliot D. Pollack & Co. estimates the project will result in a 25-year economic impact to Glendale of more than $24 million. The study also projects a one-time economic impact of 741 jobs, $39.3 million in wages and $89 million in economic activity. The on-going impact of the USA Basketball campus to the region includes 475 new jobs in Maricopa County (with 272 to be located in Glendale), $21.9 million in annual wages and $54.3 million in annual economic output.
  • I've said it before here, and will say it again. Indy's losing the drive and competitive edge that turned it in the Amateur Sports Capitol...and that paid off with so many other ways, from the Colts and LOS on down.

    Wake-up call Indy...the so-called basketball capitol has lost a major basketball organization. Ouch! Imagine the attention and horn-blowing community leaders would be doing if the opposite were true and we just lured USA B'ball here!

    No doubt we'll get another Final Four, but all those sporting organizations and events we used to fight for, build venues for, are looking at crumbling infrastructure and diminished civic and government support. Too bad, because Indy does not live by the Pacers and Colts alone. Afterall, how many people can afford to attend those games? Next domino to fall will be tennis, major swimming and diving events may not be far behind.

    Here's hoping we can refocus and recommit.

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