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Saturday, July 11, 2020

Big 12 and Kansas City Announce Extension for Basketball Championships

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Derek Nester
Derek Nester was born and raised in Blue Rapids, and graduated from Valley Heights High School in May of 2000. He attended Cowley College in Arkansas City and Johnson County Community College in Overland Park studying Journalism & Media Communications.After stops at KFRM and KCLY radio in Clay Center, he joined KNDY in 2002 as a board operator and play by play announcer. Derek is now responsible for the digital content of Dierking Communications, Inc. six radio stations.In 2005 Derek joined the staff of KCFX radio in Kansas City as a production coordinator for the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network, which airs on over 94 radio stations across 12 Midwest states and growing. In 2018 he became the Studio Coordinator at the Cumulus Kansas City broadcast center for Kansas City Chiefs Football.

The Big 12 Conference has announced a one-year extension to the multi-year agreement for Kansas City to serve as the host site for the Phillips 66 Men’s and Women’s Basketball Championships. The events will remain in Kansas City through 2025.  

Kansas City was the initial host of both championships in the first six years of the Conference from 1997-2002, and again in 2005, 2008 and 2010-12. The men’s postseason event has continued its run in Kansas City since 2010 while the women’s championship was set to return in 2020. Due to COVID-19, the men’s championship was halted after the first two games while the women’s event was cancelled in its entirety.  

“We were all looking forward to having our basketball championships back together in Kansas City in 2020. While the pandemic didn’t allow that to happen, this extension provides an additional year for our institutions and fans to take part in the Big 12 basketball atmosphere that has become synonymous with Kansas City,” said Big 12 Commissioner Bob Bowlsby.

“With the plans we had in place to celebrate the men’s and women’s basketball championships being back to together in Kansas City, the 2020 Big 12 Basketball Championships were poised to be especially exciting,“ says Kathy Nelson, President & CEO of the Kansas City Sports Commission. “The unfortunate cancellation of those events due to COVID-19 definitely left our community wanting more. We are excited and grateful that the Big 12 Conference has decided to extend our agreement to host both the Men’s and Women’s Basketball Championships through 2025.”

The Phillips 66 Big 12 Men’s Basketball Championship played seven of its events in Kemper Arena before moving to the newly-opened Sprint Center in 2008. The men’s championship has been contested in Sprint Center annually since 2010 with crowds averaging near 18,000 each year.  

Municipal Auditorium has hosted the Phillips 66 Women’s Championship each year that it has been played in Kansas City and will continue to do so through the term of the agreement. The facility has undergone $5 million in renovations to include new video boards, LED scorer’s table, sound system, lighting, electrical upgrades and lower level seating.

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