NCAA Football Donates $50,000 to Renovate Youth Sports Facility

For Immediate Release

NCAA Football Donates $50,000 to Renovate Youth Sports Facility
Fiesta Bowl partnership upgrades Tempe’s Benedict Sports Complex  

TEMPE, Ariz. and LEXINGTON, Ky. – January 4, 2011 – In alliance with the Tostitos Fiesta BowlNCAA Football will donate $50,000 on behalf of its Youth Initiative and legacy program to the Benedict Sports Complex. The donation will assist with major facility upgrades and will benefit thousands of Tempe-area youth who use the field each season.

A check presentation will take place during a press conference at 11:00 a.m. (MST) at the Benedict Sports Complex on Jan. 8, 2011, two days before the 2011 Tostitos BCS National Championship Game.

Benedict Sports Complex, a 20-acre multipurpose sports facility located in the heart of Tempe, Ariz., is one of the most popular facilities in the Tempe park system. NCAA Football’s donation will be used to replace lighting panels that were damaged in a fire last spring. Benedict Sports Complex is located at 490 W. Guadalupe Rd. - Tempe, Arizona 85282.

“Well developed and maintained facilities are essential to the success of youth sports programs,” said Mark Womack, president, NCAA Football. “We are honored to have the opportunity to contribute to such a popular facility in Tempe, and we look forward to seeing the field improvements that will benefit the many young athletes who use the complex each season.”

“Benedict Sports Complex and the city of Tempe are a perfect fit for the NCAA Football legacy program,” said Duane Woods, Fiesta Bowl Chairman of the Board. “We are grateful for the generosity of NCAA Football and the City of Tempe in helping to significantly upgrade these fields. This partnership will benefit local youth for generations to come.”

NCAA Football’s donation is the latest legacy gift awarded to the host city of the BCS National Championship Game. Last year, a donation was made to the Robinson Park project in Pasadena, led by the Tournament of the Roses Committee, and in 2008, NCAA Football contributed to the Moore Park project, led by the city of Miami and the Orange Bowl Committee.

“One of NCAA Football’s core objectives is to support and enhance youth football through our Youth Initiative’s legacy program,” said Bob Vecchione, chair, NCAA Football Youth Initiative. “By revitalizing and repairing parks and fields, we are able to reach a tremendous amount of young athletes at the community level. The upgrades to the Benedict Sports Complex will benefit more than 3,000 youth participants, whom we hope will find their passion for football while playing at the new and improved facility.”

NCAA Football’s Youth Initiative began in 2007 when the organization made a $750,000 commitment to help rebuild the New Orleans Recreation Department's youth football league following Hurricane Katrina. In 2008, NCAA Football committed $1.5 million to develop a three-pronged national youth program comprising youth day clinicsapparel grants and a legacy gift. More than 7,000 young athletes have been positively impacted since the program’s inception.

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Follow NCAA Football on Twitter: @NCAAFootball 

Find the NCAA Football Youth Initiative on Facebook: www.facebook.com/ncaafootballyouth

About NCAA Football

NCAA Football USA, Inc. represents a coalition of the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA), the Collegiate Commissioners Association (CCA), the Football Bowl Association(FBA), the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA), the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) and the National Football Foundation (NFF) and serves as the collective voice to promote college football. NCAA Football is managed by IMG College, a division of IMG Worldwide. For more information on NCAA Football, visitwww.NCAAFootball.com.

About the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl

This year marks the 40th anniversary for the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl. On Saturday, January 1, 2011, the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl will host Big East champion Connecticut vs. Big 12 Champion Oklahoma. Kickoff is at 6:30 p.m. (MST) from the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz. The game will be televised nationally on ESPN, as well as aired on ESPN Radio. For more information on the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl, please visit the official website at http://www.fiestabowl.org/index.php.

CONTACT:

NCAA Football Media Inquiries: Alex Ritchey, alex.ritchey@ncaafootball.com, 404.814.1330

On-site NCAA Football: Tiffany Greco, tiffany.greco@ncaafootball.com, 262.719.4742

Tostitos Fiesta Bowl: Andy Bagnato, abagnato@fiestabowl.org, 602.565.3147  

City of Tempe: Denise Rentschler, denise_rentschler@tempe.gov, 480.350.5209