David L. Lawrence Convention Center will serve as the event hub and primary competition venue
PITTSBURGH – Officers of VisitPITTSBURGH and its sports development department, SportsPITTSBURGH, today welcomed back the Hoop Group Pittsburgh Jam Fest. More than 420 boys AAU basketball teams and more than 4,000 athletes, ages 14-18, will compete in the tournament beginning today through Sunday. For the first time, the majority of the tournament will be played on 24 courts set up in the David L. Lawrence Convention Center. There will be more than 600 games with each team guaranteed 3 games.
Pittsburgh Jam Fest is an NCAA-sanctioned event, taking place during one of only two evaluation periods. Last year, more than 200 college coaches attended. Former Hoop Group participants include 128 current NBA players such as Kevin Durant, Kobe Bryant, Kyrie Irving, Karl Anthony-Towns, former Pittsburgh University star Dejuan Blair, Char Valley High School graduate T.J. McConnell, and many more. Twelve of the 14 players on this year's Men's Villanova NCAA Division 1 Championship team are Hoop Group Alumni.
"We are delighted to once again host the Hoop Group Pittsburgh Jam Fest and welcome to our city many of the elite players in the country,"said Jennifer Hawkins, executive director of sports development for VisitPITTSBURGH. "We are looking forward to a weekend filled with great basketball. This event again demonstrates how our community and businesses work together to host large events and why Pittsburgh is a major destination for both professional and amateur sport events."
"The Pittsburgh Jam Fest is one of the most prominent AAU basketball tournaments in the country," said Dave Fedor, director of Hoop Group Team Tournaments. "Pittsburgh is a great sports city, and we appreciate the assistance of SportsPITTSBURGH, the local communities and businesses, and the staff of the David L. Lawrence Convention Center for ensuring this remains one of the top AAU tournaments in the country. Having one primary location with 24 courts allows us to take the tournament to a new level for players, teams, college coaches and media outlets and, most importantly, the fans."
Hoop Group and SportsPITTSBURGH recently reached an agreement for the tournament to return to Pittsburgh well into the future.
About Hoop Group
The Hoop Group is the worldwide leader in basketball instruction, offering premier basketball camps since the summer of 1963. Having touched the lives of over one million young men and women, Hoop Group has evolved from simply offering summer basketball camps, to hosting tournaments and competitions, skills camps, clinics, showcases, and facilities to the basketball community. The Hoop Group's alumni list reads as a "Who's Who" of the basketball world, including: Moses Malone, Julius "Doctor J" Erving, Vince Carter, Kobe Bryant, Chris Paul, Carmelo Anthony, Bob Knight, Chuck Daly, Billy Donovan, John Wall, Kyrie Irving and many more.
As the sports development division of VisitPITTSBURGH, SportsPITTSBURGH's primary goal is to attract and host a wide variety of sporting events in the region, providing the experience and expertise to reinforce Pittsburgh's reputation as a legendary sports town.