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NCAA First Four will remain in Dayton through 2015 NCAA tournament

Nov 12, 2012, 11:19 AM EDT

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Last month Dayton, Ohio and the University of Dayton embarked on a campaign to keep the First Four in town as opposed to the NCAA shopping the beginning of the NCAA tournament around to the highest bidder.

And while the school and city hoped for a long-term commitment from the NCAA, Monday’s news is a step in the right direction for Dayton.

The NCAA will leave the First Four in Dayton through the 2015 NCAA tournament, and the possibility a long-term deal down the line remains on the table according to a source.

“It has to be clear, no matter where any visitor travels in the Dayton area that week, that Dayton is the center of the college basketball world when the NCAA comes to town,” Dayton vice president and athletic director Tim Wabler said back in October.

“We have the chance to cement the First Four in Dayton for years to come. It’s our goal to make Dayton as synonymous with the First Four as Omaha is with the College World Series.”

Today’s decision gives the city two more years to display this in hopes of making Dayton the first stop on the trek to the Final Four. And with the Final Four being an event that doesn’t have a fixed location like the College World Series, that isn’t a bad idea.

Raphielle also writes for the NBE Basketball Report and can be followed on Twitter at @raphiellej.