Basketball Returning to Boardwalk Hall

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As reported yesterday, basketball is coming back to Boardwalk Hall. 

On Friday, June 1st, the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) announced that Jim Whelan Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City has been selected to host the 2020-22 MAAC Men’s and Women’s Basketball Championships.

The MAAC Council of Presidents unanimously accepted the facility’s bid to host  the championships at their May 30, meeting in New York City.

“It’s a great thrill for me personally to have the MAAC Men’s & Women’s Basketball Championships hosted by Atlantic City in the world-famous Boardwalk Hall,” notes MAAC Commissioner Richard Ensor. 

“As a lifelong resident of the Jersey shore, I know what a great destination site Atlantic City will be with numerous entertainment, hotel, gaming and dining options to compliment an exciting week of men’s and women’s college hoops.”

Jim Whelan Boardwalk Hall will host the MAAC Basketball Championships for the first time in history.

The MAAC Basketball Championships will return to the state of New Jersey for the first time since 2003, when it was played at Sovereign Bank Arena in Trenton. A total of nine MAAC Men’s Basketball Championships and five Women’s Basketball Championships have been held in New Jersey, including the inaugural event in 1982 at what was the Meadowlands Arena in East Rutherford.   

"We are very excited to be chosen by the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference to bring the 2020-2022 Men’s and Women’s Basketball Championships to Atlantic City’s Jim Whelan Boardwalk Hall," said CRDA Board Chairman Robert Mulcahy.

"This reinforces the CRDA’s commitment to attract world-class sporting events and increase visitors to our destination. We appreciate the hard work done by Spectra to help Atlantic City secure this bid."

The arena was constructed in 1929 as the country’s original convention center and was declared a United States National Historic Landmark in 1987. Jim Whelan Boardwalk Hall seats 10,075 and has hosted various professional/collegiate sporting events and concerts through its history. Most recently, the arena hosted the Atlantic 10 Men’s Basketball Championship from 2007-12.

The 2020-22 Basketball Championships will be co-hosted by MAAC member institutions Monmouth University and Rider University. The 2020 championships take place March 10-14, while the 2021 championships are March 9-13, and 2022 championships are March 8-12. The championship games will take place on the Saturday of the event each year. 

2020-22 MAAC Basketball Championships Dates




Tuesday, March 10 – Saturday, March 14


Tuesday, March 9 – Saturday, March 13


Tuesday, March 8 – Saturday, March 12

“Monmouth is delighted that the MAAC Men’s and Women’s Basketball Championships will be coming to Atlantic City. The city has shown a great interest in being our host, and the venue will be a wonderful draw for our fans and friends,” said Monmouth University Vice President/Director of Athletics Dr. Marilyn McNeil. “We believe that this decision by the MAAC Presidents will lead to a fabulous destination opportunity for MAAC fans, students, and our student-athletes.” 

“We are very much looking forward to co-hosting the MAAC Men’s and Women’s Basketball Championships in Atlantic City. Not only does Atlantic City offer the conference neutrality, it provides a multitude of entertainment, shopping, and dining options for fans to take advantage of while enjoying championship basketball,” noted Rider University Athletic Director Don Harnum.

Iona College claimed its third-straight MAAC Men’s Basketball Championship in 2018. The Gaels became the third team in MAAC men’s basketball history to win three-straight titles, they joined Siena College (2008-10) and former member La Salle University (1988-90).

On the women’s side, Quinnipiac University repeated as MAAC Champions. It was the Bobcats third title since joining the MAAC. The Bobcats became the first women’s team to repeat as champions since Marist College won nine consecutive titles from 2006-14.

The 2020 MAAC Championships in Atlantic City will include a shift of the tourney schedule to the last week of the regular season concluding on the Saturday before the NCAA’s Selection Sunday for the men and Selection Monday for the women.  In noting the change in dates, MAAC Commissioner Ensor noted that, “The new dates place the MAAC tournament in the weekend when all college basketball fans are anticipating team selections for the NCAA Championships and the league membership believes it will bring a new level of excitement for the teams and fans.”

The 2018 Canisius College Economic Impact of this past year’s MAAC Basketball Championships was measured at $3,911,795.50, that was generated from economic fan activity during the week of the championships in Albany. The report includes lodging, transportation, food/beverage, non-basketball entertainment, shopping, and purchases made at the event (concessions, merchandise, etc.). The Economic Impact Study was composed by authors: Dr. Shawn O’Rourke, Nicholl Martin, and Kevin Bailey.

The 2019 MAAC Basketball Championships takes place March 7-11, at the Times Union Center in Albany, NY. The 2019 championships mark the final year of a two-year extension between the MAAC and the Times Union Center.

ESPN will telecast the entire men’s and women’s championships on the network’s various linear and digital platforms. The MAAC just completed its first year of a new 8-year agreement with ESPN which saw over 300 broadcasts of MAAC sports.

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