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NCAA Women’s Final Four returning to Columbus in 2027

The city hosted the Women’s Final Four in 2018, which was named SportsTravel Magazine’s Sports Event of the Year.
Credit: AP Photo/Darron Cummings
Notre Dame's Jackie Young and Mississippi State's Teaira McCowan (15) tip off the first half in the final of the women's NCAA Final Four college basketball tournament, Sunday, April 1, 2018, in Columbus, Ohio.

COLUMBUS, Ohio — The NCAA announced on Monday the Women’s Final Four will be returning to Columbus in 2027.

The city hosted the Women’s Final Four in 2018, which was named SportsTravel Magazine’s Sports Event of the Year. That Final Four featured two overtime national semifinal games for the first time and a national championship game decided on a buzzer beater with Notre Dame winning its second national title.

“We are grateful to be a hub for women’s sports through our partnership with the NCAA,” said Linda Logan, CEO and President of the Greater Columbus Sports Commission. “We raised the bar globally with our work on the 2018 Women’s Final Four and embrace the challenge to elevate the event even higher in 2027.”

Starting from a pool of 15 cities, Columbus was selected as one of the seven semifinalists to host earlier this year. The Greater Columbus Sports Commission, The Ohio State University and Nationwide Arena submitted a final bid and hosted a site visit from the NCAA in August.

“Incredible things happen when we come together in the name of sports,” said Gene Smith, Senior Vice President and Wolfe Foundation Endowed Athletic Director, The Ohio State University. “These championship events will have a profound impact on our university and community.”

According to the Greater Columbus Sports Commission, the 2018 event brought in $21.7 million in direct visitor spending to the region. More than 80% of visitors were from outside of Ohio, with 60% making their first trip to Columbus.

“The 2018 Women’s Final Four was a thrill culminating in two OT semifinals and a buzzer beater. We cannot wait for the opportunity to host a future tournament and welcome players, coaches, programs, families and fans from all over the country to Nationwide Arena,” said Michael Gatto, COO of Columbus Arena Management and Senior Vice President, Nationwide Arena.

Along with Columbus, the NCAA also announced four future locations: Indianapolis (2028), San Antonio (2029), Portland (2030) and Dallas (2031).

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