San Antonio named site for 2018 NCAA® Men’s Final Four®

SanAntonioSports_colorThe NCAA® Division I Men’s Basketball Committee announced that San Antonio will be the site for the 2018 NCAA® Men’s Final Four®. San Antonio was one of eight cities vying for the marquee event in 2017-2020 cycle, including Atlanta, Indianapolis, Minneapolis, New Orleans, North Texas, Phoenix/Glendale, and St. Louis. San Antonio has hosted three Men’s Final Four’s, the last one in 2008.

“This is great news and I want to thank the NCAA for selecting San Antonio as a site for the Men’s Final Four and confirming that San Antonio is one of the best cities in the nation—if not the best city—for hosting a Final Four. I want to thank and commend the hard work of the San Antonio Local Organizing Committee which includes UTSA, San Antonio Sports and our City staff. Once again, all that makes San Antonio special will be showcased across the country and around the world,” said San Antonio Mayor Ivy R. Taylor.

“NCAA fans love coming to San Antonio for this marquee event and our city has the perfect setup for all the Final Four has to offer,” said San Antonio Sports President & CEO Russ Bookbinder. “We look forward to hosting an outstanding event that is so much more than a basketball game.”

Based on the 2014 Men’s Final Four held in North Texas, the event is expected to have an economic impact of $85 million. It will be held in an Alamodome which will undergo extensive upgrades, including expanded concourses and improved interior technology, with a seating capacity of up to 72,000.

“We are proud to welcome back the NCAA Men’s Final Four to San Antonio. The Alamodome, San Antonio’s world-class facility, is already home to UTSA’s Roadrunner football and the Valero Alamo Bowl, and with our planned improvements will be the perfect setting for premier sporting events such as the Final Four,” said San Antonio City Manager Sheryl Sculley.

San Antonio has hosted three previous Men’s Final Fours (1998, 2004, 2008), two Women’s Final Fours (2002, 2010) and two Women’s Division I Volleyball Championship (2005, 2011). Today’s announcement culminated more than a year of planning, meetings, facility diagrams, renderings, bid books, presentations and a site visit. San Antonio’s bid committee, including key members of San Antonio Sports, UTSA, the Convention & Visitors Bureau, Alamodome and the City’s Sports & Convention Facilities Department, traveled to the NCAA® headquarters on Nov. 12 for their final presentation to the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Committee.

“We’re very excited that we have another opportunity to host the Final Four here in San Antonio. This means a tremendous amount to our university and to the visibility of UTSA,” said UTSA Athletic Director Lynn Hickey. “San Antonio is a great site for this event and the NCAA Tournament in general, and we are honored to be the host institution for one of the best sporting events in the nation. The San Antonio Local Organizing Committee is an excellent collaboration of hard-working and committed people. The City has made an outstanding commitment to upgrade the Alamodome, and when you put all of the other things that we have — the proximity of our hotels to the facility, the River Walk, the staff that knows how to run this tournament well — it’s just a win-win. It’s well deserved and we will do a great job as hosts.”

Tux ‘N Tennies presented by SWBC and Lone Star Auto Group to be held on January 8, 2015

silver black give back Logo_Horizontal_Alternate180x150-SWBCSilver & Black Give Back, the nonprofit partner of Spurs Sports & Entertainment’s family of teams, will hold its annual Tux ‘N Tennies fundraiser presented by SWBC and Lone Star Auto Group on Thursday, January 8, 2015. Hosted by the San Antonio Spurs, the premier fundraiser for Silver & Black Give Back’s youth programs is a unique opportunity to join the entire Spurs Family for live entertainment, a festive feast, and one-of-a-kind silent and live auctions.

Held at the AT&T Center, the annual fundraising event features franchise players, coaches and executives in tuxedoes, gowns and tennis shoes enjoying an unparalleled evening of celebration. Back by popular demand, this year’s event has a Spurs Night Live theme and will feature lively libations and special entertainment to conclude the festivities. To see photos of last year’s event, click here.

Silver & Black Give Back is a 501(c)(3) public charity that invests in the community in partnership with the entire Spurs Sports & Entertainment family of teams.  Since 1988 our players, coaches and staff have focused on fostering young talent and enriching the community by encouraging local youth to become responsible adults and give back through programs like Spurs Youth Basketball League and Team Up Challenge. More information on Silver and Black Give Back can be found at

For information on reserving a table for the 2015 Tux ‘N Tennies fundraiser, please contact Loretta Kerner at or 210-444-5861.

Media Contact: Meredith Collier, or 210-444-5608

Be a Spur for the day at the Spurs Family Fantasy Event!

TicketAdvantageJoin us to be a Spur for the day! Through the Spurs Family Fantasy Event, you and your family or kids from your favorite nonprofit organization can join the entire San Antonio Spurs squad for an exclusive experience. Kids ages 5-18 will learn DSC_2146from, interact with and play with the Spurs players, get scouted by the coaching staff, and leave with incredible memories.

Participants will have unprecedented access to the Spurs Practice Facility where they will have the opportunity to learn from the reigning NBA Champions.  Food, drinks and treats will be provided throughout the day, and photographers will be on hand to capture the memories as you focus on the experience. In addition to running drills with Spurs players and coaches, you will take a tour of the facility and the weight room, take a photo with all five NBA Championship trophies, receive a signed contract from Spurs General Manager RC Buford, and get interviewed by studio host and sideline reporter Andrew Monaco.

DSC_2117This year’s Spurs Family Fantasy event is set for Sunday, Nov. 2 at the Spurs Practice Facility and costs $5,000 for a family four pack. All proceeds benefit Silver & Black Give Back youth sports programs like the Spurs Youth Basketball DSC_2158League, which is celebrating its 25th anniversary this season.

For footage of last year’s event, go to or click here. All participants are required to be accompanied by a chaperone. Only one chaperone is required for groups or families. To register for the 2014 Spurs Family Fantasy Event or for more information, please contact Loretta Kerner at

About Spurs Youth Basketball League The Spurs Youth Basketball League (formerly the Spurs Drug-Free League) was founded by Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich and Kids Sports Network president/founder Frank Martin as a way of promoting recreational youth basketball and teaching students to make positive choices and have respect for all.  The SYBL is a recipient of President George H. W. Bush’s Point of Light Award for its innovative programming and anti-drug efforts.

Over the past two-and-a-half decades, more than 275,000 children and coaches have benefited from the SYBL.  The league offers 12,000 young people the opportunity to play basketball and improve their athletic skills while learning teamwork, cooperation and discipline in a positive and safe environment.

About Silver & Black Give Back Silver & Black Give Back is a 501(c)(3) public charity that invests in the community in partnership with the entire Spurs Sports & Entertainment family of teams. For more than 25 years our players, coaches and staff have focused on fostering young talent and enriching the community by encouraging local youth to become responsible adults and give back through programs like Spurs Youth Basketball League and Team Up Challenge. Together, our community has the power to empower and create lasting change throughout San Antonio. More information on Silver & Black Give Back can be found at Fantasy - SYBL

Businesses can follow Spurs “Good to Great” example

Wright, John_CroppedBy John Wright, Managing Partner, PS&Co.

As I write this article, we are hours away from the San Antonio Spurs beginning the NBA finals against the Miami Heat for the second straight year.  A little about me – first, I am a sports fan and second, a HUGE Spurs fan.  I know many of you, likely most of you, would also say that you are huge Spurs fans, too.  Over the past week, as the finals have grown closer, much has been made of the accomplishment of the Spurs team, the coaching staff, and the organization as a whole.  According to many of the “experts,” few teams, if any, could have recovered from such a devastating loss and had the focus, drive, and determination to return to the finals for a shot at redemption.  Obviously, the Spurs are no ordinary team.  And they are no ordinary organization.

While it can be hard to fully separate the Spurs fan inside of us, we can look at the Spurs and take some great organizational lessons.  When you hear members of the team, the coaches, or even Peter Holt talk about their success this year, you hear them mention the principle of “Good to Great.”  Much of the inference is applied to moving the ball to improve a “good” shot to a “great” shot.  However, that business principle is not new.  The book “Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap…And Others Don’t” by James C. Collins must be the catalyst.  Further, in those same interviews, you will hear the players talk about culture, commitment, accountability, teamwork (okay that is one they should say), leadership, development, and on and on.

When you look at them through a “non-sports” lens, the Spurs do what we all strive to do.

  • They hire and retain the best talent. The core of the team has been together for a number of years and stay in San Antonio by choice. Don’t forget how seemingly close Tim Duncan was to becoming a member of the Orlando Magic. He, like the others, has stayed because of the organizational difference.
  • They manage and maintain their culture. And they don’t just announce it – they live it. Their culture is clear and consistent.
  • Leaders lead. Peter Holt simply doesn’t get the credit he deserves. He certainly is in a position to be a dominant voice in Spurs operational decisions. Yet, clearly he lets his leaders do their job. I love coach Pop, but I am sure that there are a lot of owners that might not have been able to check their ego and let Pop be Pop. Similarly, Coach Pop had to set aside some of his own control when R.C. Buford became the team’s General Manager. And the examples go on all the way down the bench. Again, the Spurs demonstrate a “Good to Great” principle in getting the right people in the right seat on the bus.
  • They adapt. Just like in business, the market changes, our capabilities change, and products change. While the Spurs will still hold firm the team’s commitment to defense, they clearly are not the same defensively focused team they were when they won their last championship.   In those days, with the same core players, about the only time you saw the Spurs fly up and down the court was when they were matching the speed of the old Mike D’Antoni Phoenix Suns. Those were fun, high-scoring games, but they were rare. Several years ago, Pop and his staff revamped their offense to better suit their roster. While they are still focused on key defensive principles, today the Spurs are a much different team because of their ability to adapt.
  • Lastly, and today most obviously, they take their experiences for what they are and work to improve. I think the “experts” are right. Few, if any, teams or organizations could have responded so well after last year’s loss in game six of the finals.

Admittedly, I am a Spurs “homer,” however, they are a wonderful example for many businesses on strategic thinking, organizational planning, and execution that we should all look to emulate.

In closing, I’d like to leave you with a couple of quotes:

F. Scott Fitzgerald ~ “Never confuse a single defeat with a final defeat.”

Tim Duncan ~ “We’ll do it this time.”

Go Spurs Go!

Silver & Black Give Back unveils special edition Lucchese Spurs Boots

SBGBLogo_Wordmark_BlackJust in time for the NBA Finals, Spurs fans can now show love for the home team by purchasing a pair of special edition Lucchese Spurs boots. Silver & Black Give Back (SBGB), the nonprofit for Spurs Sports & Entertainment’s family of teams, unveiled the special edition Lucchese Spurs boots for both men and women at the end of May. The exclusive line of Spurs edition boots were created to benefit SBGB youth programs and provide Spurs fans with a Texas-themed wardrobe essential.

SPURS BOOTSThe men’s boot features black Lonestar Leather with the official Spurs logo embroidered on the front and back of each boot, a classic walking heel and Lucchese toe. The women’s boot also features black Lonestar Leather with the official Spurs logo embroidered on both sides of each boot, a ladies heel and ladies fashion toe and scallop top.

The special edition Spurs boots are on sale now and retail for $499.99. Every pair of boots sold will help benefit SBGB youth programs, such as the Team Up Challenge, which just announced the 12 youth-serving nonprofits that will receive a portion of $40,000 as part of the 2014 Summer Team Up Challenge.

Throughout the summer, the nonprofits will work to address community needs together with the San Antonio Stars. On Monday, July 7 all 12 groups will be out in the community bringing service projects to life with help from the entire Stars roster for Team Up Day.

The grant recipients include: Any Baby Can of San Antonio, Boys & Girls Club of San Antonio, Eastside Christian Action Group, Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center, Girl Scouts of Southwest Texas, Girls Incorporated of San Antonio, Good Samaritan Community Services, SA Youth, San Anto Cultural Arts, San Antonio Public Library, Stand Up for Kids and Martinez Street Women’s Center.

The Team Up Challenge encourages students to apply what they are learning in the classroom to the real world, bringing education alive in powerful ways. Students create projects that address needs that will help improve their community in one of five categories: Arts & Culture, Education, Environment, Health & Wellness or Uniformed Services.  As a premier initiative of Silver & Black Give Back, Spurs, Stars and Rampage players work alongside the students to help bring their vision to life.

To purchase the exclusive line of Spurs boots, fans are encouraged to visit Ranch at the Rim for custom sizing. Those who know their boot size can also order online at To find out more about Silver & Black Give Back visit