Feb. 14, 2013
LOUISVILLE, Ky. -
The National Collegiate Athletic Association and the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) are celebrating 75 years of March Madness by commissioning one-of-a-kind paintings celebrating each of the national championship coaches who led their teams into history.
Paintings honoring University of Louisville coach Denny Crum of the 1980 and 1986 NCAA Division I men's basketball championship-winning Cardinal teams will be unveiled during today's game against St. John's.
The original art pieces, designed and painted by world-renowned artist, Opie Otterstad, are part of a collection of 75 individual paintings, one for each of the 75 national championships from 1939 through 2013. The pieces, honoring Coach Crum, will be publicly unveiled at the KFC Yum! Center on Thursday, February 14, during pre-game and halftime activities and will be on display in the concourse during the second half. The original pieces of art will then be auctioned online starting February 14 at NCAA.com/Art. Two-hundred-fifty limited edition reproductions will also be made available for purchase via the same website on the same date. A portion of the proceeds from the auction will benefit the NABC Foundation, which supports Ticket to Reading Rewards (TTRR), the College Basketball Experience (CBE), and the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame.
"We're pleased to celebrate the crowning achievements of the coaches who have guided their teams to championships over the past 75 years," said Jim Haney, executive director of the NABC. "This collection of artwork will serve as a unique and permanent reminder of these coaches' accomplishments on the court and their incredible contributions to the game of basketball."
"Coach Crum is among the greatest coaches and teachers in the history of college basketball," said Dan Gavitt, NCAA vice president of men's basketball. "The NCAA and University of Louisville are eternally grateful for his impact on the lives of the student-athletes he has coached and are thrilled to honor his place in the tradition of March Madness with these paintings."
For complete information about the art program, and other NCAA programs celebrating 75 years of March Madness, visit www.ncaa.com/art and www.ncaa.com/march-madness.