March 14-20, 2018
Kansas City, MO
PASSION. TRADITION. BASKETBALL.
College basketball’s oldest national championship returns to Kansas City in 2018, marking 73 years in the City of Fountains.
The competition will host 32 teams in a 31-game, single-elimination format. The field of participants includes 17 automatic qualifiers, one host berth and 14 at-large bids. View the schedule here. 2018 will be the 81st edition of the tournament.
Tickets are still available. Single-game tickets start as low as $20 per person and all-tournament passes begin at $90. Purchase tickets here, the Municipal Auditorium box office or by calling 816-595-8122.
Special events include Meet the Players at Children's Mercy Park, home of Sporting KC in Kansas City, Kan. (March 13), and St. Patrick's Family Fun Day (March 17). Returning in 2018 is the NABC-NAIA Shoot & Slam—a three-point and dunk contest, presented by US Bank, on March 17. For more information, visit naiahoops.com.
Kicked off in 1937, the competition is college basketball’s longest running tournament. KC saw its fair share of history, as well. In 1957, Tennessee State became the first historically black college to win a national college basketball championship. Twenty-three years later, the NAIA became the first collegiate association to hold championships for women’s athletics.
In 2018, the NAIA will celebrate the 70th anniversary of Clarence Walker breaking the color barrier when famed coach John Wooden advocated for and brought him to the 1948 Championship. Walker became the first African American to particpate in a collegiate basketball championship.